Thursday, November 20, 2014

Week 46 of 365 Days of Art Challenge

This has been such a busy week. I've been burning the midnight oil almost every night until 1-3 am working on a quilt for the Mavericks' quilt guild annual challenge. Therefore, I did not get a sketch done for Blue Twig Studio's weekly sketch challenge for her 365 Days of Art Challenge. I'm using my finished quilt in place of my sketch this week!

The Maverick's quilt guild challenge is called "States of Mine" and is composed of two quilts - one about Arizona (AZ) Naturally (which can be anything to do with AZ) and the second is about the person's state of origin. The only restriction is the quilt has to be 18" wide by 48" high. This vertical composition made it difficult for me to decide what to do.  I had many photos that would make great quilts, but cropping them to fit the 18"x48" vertical restriction made me throw out several of them. I did finish my AZ quilt, but my Origins quilt will be late.

For my AZ quilt, I decided on a night-blooming cactus flower. I'm not an early bird, but I got up at 5 am to see all the beautiful white blooms on our cacti in the front yard. I photographed several, as the sun was just coming over the horizon and highlighted the flowers beautifully!

This is the flower that I cropped for the quilt challenge. 
Cereus or Queen of the Night cacti bloom. From our front yard.
I hand-painted the quilt with Pebeo setacolor paints, Tsukineko inks, and Silk acrylic glaze on white Pimatex cotton fabric. I used two pieces of fabric to make the quilt 3-dimensional. I painted all the front flower petals on one piece of fabric, and the back petals that look blue due to the shadows created by the sun on a second piece of fabric. I did a lot of thread play of the flower on wool batting using a variety of trilobal polyester and silk threads. Then I added two layers of byAnnie's Soft and Stable foam stabilizer to the top layer of petals to give them lift. When stitching the layers altogether - the padded top petals and the blue bottom petals onto a thin cotton batting and backing fabric - I added an extra layer of polyester stuffing to puff up the center petals even more. Then I finished quilting all the layers together. Finally, I embellished the flower with 3 mm, lime green, flat, twisted aluminum for the stamens of the flower.  Following are the various steps of my process in creating this quilt.

Step 1. Fabric is placed over pattern on a foam board.
Painted yellows and oranges with Pebeo setacolor paints.
Step 2. Added deeper oranges and reds with Tsukineko inks in
red delicious, tangerine, autumn leaf and vintage wine.
Step 3. Continued to deepen the values and added the background in the top of the quilt
with Tsukineko inks in apple green, vintage wine, cool gray, ultramarine blue and midnight.
Step 4. Deepened the values of bottom petals and added background with
Tsukineko apple green, vintage wine, cool gray, ultramarine blue, and midnight inks.
Also lightened some of the yellow areas with Tsukineko white and lemon yellow inks. 
Step 5. Removed the first piece of fabric, and covered the pattern with the second 
piece of fabric to start the back petals. Used Silk acrylic glaze in blue for the main color. 
Added Tsukineko inks in ultramarine blue, cerulean blue, red delicious, apple green, 
tangerine, and lemon yellow. Deepened the value of the background with Tsukineko 
midnight, cool gray, and ultramarine inks. Added the pistil in apple green and thistle inks.
Step 6. Added thread play and quilting with Superior Rainbow trilobal polyester, 

Bottom Line polyester, and Kimono Silk threads. Also used YLI Silk threads for the 
thread play. I used parallel, softly curved lines that followed the shape of the petals for
 my thread play and quilting motifs. Added Soft and Stable foam stabilizer and polyester 
stuffing under the front yellow and orange petals to give a 3D effect. 
Cereus, Queen of the Night quilt, 18" x 48". This is my final
quilt embellished with the 3mm flat, lime green, twisted
aluminum for the stamens. Finished with a facing, label, and sleeve.  
Close up to show the 3D effect.
Close up to show the thread play, quilting and aluminum stamens.

This quilt took me much longer than I expected, but I'm thrilled with the result. Now to finish my second quilt for the challenge - my Origins quilt. I will post that quilt when I am finished with it.

Keep creating!!

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