Tag Archives: September master class

September Master Class, Parts 2 and 3

September’s work presented many technical challenges, so Mean Streets is a vague pinned together mishmash of fabrics instead of finished. I did get the Misty Fuse I ordered and have fused at least a yard of it to dyed and painted silk organza. Some of that yard ended up on my iron. Now I’m in a quandary about how to cut up said organza as much of it cannot be replicated.

But, onward. Here’s what I sent in.
My work on Mean Streets has been very slow. I’m still working out the direction of the light and where shadows are cast. I’m also waiting for a shipment of Misty Fuse to hold down the silk organza. There are sags where the organza droops between pins that aren’t meant to be there and some gaps where pieces don’t quite meet – all not meant to be part of the design. The shadow of the light pole is paper for now. The street in the foreground needs considerable work. I don’t intend the abupt change from the yellow to white to remain. I doubt I’ll finish this by the end of the month, but that’s OK. The size seems to be working out to about 35 inches wide and 29 inches high.

Elizabeth’s response:

You know in the photograph, you don’t really see some of the problems you mention…so don’t worry about them.  it does look really interesting and mysterious…which is one of the great ways to use lost edges.

At present you have two yellow squares competing for attention, but I know you’re going to fix that….
Also the very interesting yellow and black fabric on the right draws one’s eye…I’d carry bits of that fabric through into various places within the quilt.
The colors are super…and blend together really well…and it does have a very gritty urban feel to it – so you’re really capturing the atmosphere
I also really like the edge contrasts you’re developing…so I think it’s a really great start and definitely well worth continuing with…
and yes…you’re right to pool the shadows…excellent way to pull things together.

So what did I send it for my finished project? Why, a completed Emerald Isles.



Filed under Art quilts, In Process

September At The Lost and Found

…edges, that is. Our master class theme of the month is lost and found edges.

My submission: This month’s sketches were done in pencil and crayon. I was drawn to moody landscapes from photos.

Sketches 1 and 3 feature snowy scenes where edges come and go as tree trunks, buildings, and roads cross snowy fields bisected by fencing. Sketch 1 shows overlapping fencing while sketch 3 shows the scene through the fence. The color schemes could be in grays and blues, or changed to something quite unrelated to snow.

Sketches 2a and 2b are meant to show a mysterious, somewhat menacing nighttime urban scene where street lights cast strange shadows; and a light in back of fencing (?) casts faint stripes of light on the buildings, sidewalk and street. The values would be darker than I put in my sketch, but I found it hard to color over gray. I was thinking about de Chirico’s architectural paintings as I sketched.

Elizabeth’s response:


Sketch 1

Snow scenes are perfect for lost edges, as the snow drifts over objects and light values spread from one thing to another…also at the beginning and end of the day, the trees and their shadows become one object….the bottom of the fence  dissolves into shadow
In the sketch above, the one thing I’m not sure of is the building on the left…it adds a lot of weight to the left and I think distracts from the beauty of the man made geometry of the fence versus the natural relaxed geometry of overlapping branches.  Just put  your hand over the bld and I think you’ll see that you don’t need it.
As with anything using perspective, be sure you have the angles right….


Sketch 3

I do love the color scheme…BUT we shouldn’t be thinking color till the shapes and values are worked out.  Remember that rounded things like tree trunks with a side light gradate gently from almost white to very dark.  I like the idea of the landscape beyond, but keep it very soft…your highest contrast of values is actually in the background at present so I’d soften that dark line and also slightly darken the road/river…so that you can keep the real dark and light in the trees.  Also at present you do have some very dark values…but they’re towards the edges of  the piece – my eye keeps going down to the LH corner for example…
I like the line quality – the little squiggly branches…remember to lose them too!


I like de Chirico’s mysterious empty spaces too…and lighted windows onto an empty dark street definitely is evocative…but I wouldn’t have the door quite so central.  At present it’s a black hole right in the middle….put it a little to one side, and further up or down…and then connect it with shadows to the base of the building.  With a night time scene you have lots of opportunity for deep shadows hiding edges…go for it!!

Conclusion – I’m going with the urban street scene, but it’s developing s-l-o-w-l-y. Here’s as far as I’ve gotten.

mean-streets-startI need to work out the direction of the shadows, which means figuring out the light sources.


Filed under Art quilts, In Process