Monday, January 16, 2012

Serendipity Papers

This is the freezer paper on top of my worktable.  I just love the randome marks and colors left behind from other projects. Someone coined the term "serendipity papers" to describe this sort of thing.  I'd credit that person but I've read the term in several books and don't know who said it first.  I'm thinking about ways that papers like this could be used in future projects.  Printed out on silk and stitched, used as a background for digital collage..... I also save all my paper towels which come out so beautiful sometimes.  Unfortunately I get caught up in worrying about using paper towels in various art projects because they are not archival and are not overly durable.  This is just one of the many ways I contrive to let the Resistance Monster have its way.

Dyeing Fabric

I am working on a project to enter in the Evolutions 2012 show at the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum.  My thoughts have gone round and round with some great ideas coming and going.  At one point recently I decided to see if I could transform some ugly fabric into something I like.  Get the evolution aspect of this idea?  Don't even ask why I have a ton of ugly fabric to work with.  Here is a lovely picture of the pile.  After sorting through it I decided that I would try and dye some of it to improve the color.  I have never had much interest in dyeing so I don't have the supplies on hand.  Happily Rit dye is readily available and inexpensive.  After and entire day of running my washing machine I got this:

The reds came out pretty nice.  I got one decent piece out of the green and the blue was pretty much a letdown.  The piece of blue I liked best is the one with the ivy print which doesn't  even look very blue in this picture.  Sigh.  I learned a couple of things though.  Dyeing is really a pain in the butt.  Synthethics really don't dye well with Rit dye.  And my studio lighting leaves something to be desired.  In spite of my disappointment regarding the dyeing I did end up deciding to use some of the red and green together in a project that has taken off nicely.  All of the thoughts and ideas regarding this Evolutions project have really made me notice the evolution of ideas and the way that any project evolves as you work.