Friday, April 8, 2011

Textile Masterpieces created by The Materialistics

These are INCREDIBLE and were created by The Materialistics - a group of British textile artists!

Ed Munch's The Scream - knitted by Norma Box

Picas-Sew! - by Sue McBride - Based on Pablo Picasso's Portrait of Dora Maar

Other renditions of masterpieces include: Andy Wool-hol (Marilyn Monroe); Vincent Van Gogh's Sunflowers; Van Meer's Girl with the Pearl Earring; and Rembrandt's Self-Portrait. 

You've seen The Scream...How About The SEAM?

Knitted Masterpieces

Girl with a Knit-1 Purl1 Earring

Monday, March 21, 2011

Textile Related Tutorials - Part 11

I still have to wonder what rock those people live under
who continually whine about artists not being
willing to share any of their techniques or processes...

Part 10    Part 9     Part 8    Part 7     Part 6

Part 5     Part 4     Part 3     Part 2     Part 1

Sewing Machine Tension Diagram - Superior Threads

Find My Fabric - A search engine

Watercolor Pencils on Fabric (and a different way to transfer a sketch) - Loreen Leedy

Elmer's Glue Crackle Technique - Wen Redmond

Choosing Colors and Fabrics for Skin Tones - Leni Wiener

Thread Painting 101- Angela McIntyre
Supplies - Part 1

Supplies - Part 2
The Basic Stitch
             Basic Straight Stitch

             Directional Zig-Zag

             Directional Straight Stitch

             Review and Wrap-Up

Solids, Prints or Hand-Dye? - Leni Wiener

How to Stiffen Fabric - Jessica Jones

Colored Pencil Work - Sandra Leichner

Mini-Quilt Stands - Cheryl Sleboda

A Tutorial on Pleather/Vinyl Straps - Cheryl Kuczek

Printing on Inkjet Fabric Sheets

Plexipainting - Margaret Hunt

Corona 2: Solar Eclips - Caryl Bryer Fallert

Indoor Sunprinting Mini Tutorial - Sue Andrus

More Sunprinting Info - Sue Andrus - "This post will take you through some of the process of sunprinting fabric using deeper colors than I usually have used in the past."

Preserving Leaves with Glycerin for Printing - Sue Andrus

Photo Transfers My Way - Sue Andrus

Playing with Inktense Blocks: Part I - Sue Andrus

Playing with Inktense Blocks: Part II - Sue Andrus

Industry Standards and Guidelines for Crochet and Knitting

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Silkworms Made to Spin Coloured Silk

Seeing is believing:

Luminescent Silk Cocoons Viewed Under UV Light (Credit: IMRE)

Silkworms are fed a mulberry/fluorescent dye mixture which colors the animal as well as the fibers they spin.

Dye is added to the silkworn diet for the last 4 days of the larva stage
creating a coloured animal and coloured silk (Credit: IMRE)

To read full report:

Saturday, February 12, 2011

1,200 Stitches Per Square Inch - The Art of Ray Materson

Ray Materson's work is astounding, and the incredible detail packed into his 2.5" x 3" masterworks is remarkable. While in prison at the Connecticut Pennitentiary, he one day traded cigarettes for a pair of socks, unthreaded them and thus his transformation from a cocaine addicted robber to artist began. His subject matter ranges from gut-wrenching scenes of drug use to inspiring images of baseball players and the American skyline.

 Mariano Rivera - Ray Materson

 NYC Skyline from Liberty Island - Ray Materson

Till Death Do Us - Ray Materson

Website - Be sure to click on the links for Recent Work and Past Work

Video - 3-minutes - Ex-Con on Pins and Needles

Video - 3- minutes - Eye to Eye: Prison Embroiderer

American Primative Gallery Materson&hasBiography=1

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Incredible Anatomical Dress Art

"Artificial Beauty" is the name of a show held at Shih Chien University in China during the Fall of 2010. The designs included:

Artificial Beauty Exhibit - Anatomical Ball Gown - Back View

Artificial Beauty Exhibit - Anatomy Dress

More Photos (including front view of Ball Gown)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

What's Up With Cotton?

American Quilt Retailer magazine contacted 30 fabric companies for explanations related to the current and upcoming prices of cotton fabrics. Top executives of 11 of these companies responded: Avlyn, Inc.; Clothworks; E. E. Schenck; Hoffman California Fabrics; In the Beginning Fabrics; Marcus Fabrics; Michael Miller Fabrics; Moda Fabrics; Northcott; Robert Kaufman Fabrics; and Westminster Lifestyle Fabrics.

Their responses:

Monday, January 17, 2011

Fine Cell Work

Fine Cell Work is an organization devoted to teaching needlework to UK prison inmates as well as to sell their products. Twenty-six prisons are involved with male inmates comprising 80% of the project participants. Each devotes approximately 20 hours a week to the project doing the emboridery in their cells.

Abstract Painting Design - Fine Cell Work

Detail - Abstract Painting Design - Fine Cell Work
Fine Cell Work website

Video - 16 minutes

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Intergalactic Quilts of Jimmy McBride

Jimmy McBride is fascinated by astronomy and focuses his artwork
on various aspects of it. He states that his work is machine quilted
with hand embroidery, but I think he means that it is machine pieced,
 hand quilted and hand embroidered.

M64 - Jimmy McBride

Whether the focus is on galaxies, planets, nebulae, wormholes, etc., Jimmy likes to incorporate as many elements as possible into the work.

Phobos V2 - Jimmy McBride

Detail: Phobos V2 - Jimmy McBride

Jimmy's website:

Blog - this contains a lot of information not only about how his work is conceptualized, but he also shares some of the mechanics of how the patterns are drafted and put together.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Ethereal Artwork by Gabriel Dawe

Gabriel Dawe creates fascinating and mesmerizing installations
and other artwork primarily using only Gutterman threads,
nails and wood.

Plexus No. 4 - Gabriel Dawe
 Plexus no 2 - Gabriel Dawe

"Gabriel Dawe was born in Mexico City where he grew up surrounded by the intensity and color of Mexican culture. After working as a graphic designer, he moved to Montreal, Canada in 2000 following a desire to explore foreign land. In search for creative freedom he started experimenting and creating artwork, which eventually led him to explore textiles and embroidery—activities traditionally associated with women and which were forbidden for a boy growing up in Mexico. Because of this, his work is subversive of notions of masculinity and machismo that are so ingrained in his culture. By working with thread and textiles, Dawe’s work has evolved into creating large-scale installations with thread, creating environments that deal with notions of social constructions and their relation to evolutionary theory and the self-organizing force of nature."

Gabriel Dawe's Website

Gabriel Dawe

Sunday, December 19, 2010

A Stitch in Jewish Time: Provocative Textiles

Coat of the Agunah - Andi Arnovitz

Middle Matzah - Leslie Golomb and Louise Silk

An amazing exhibit is currently on display through June 30, 2011 at the Hebrew Union College's Jewish Institute of Religion Museum (located at Brookdale Center, One West 4th Street, New York, NY 10012).
This exhibit "...explores how exceptional contemporary artists apply their skillful creativity to the ever evolving understanding of Jewish values. Individually addressing issues of memory and reflection, interpretations of history and ritual, and links between the past and present, they delve into aspects of the Holocaust, war, patriotism, celebration, prayer, feminism, and sexuality, frequently through the inclusion of Biblical texts and sometimes challenging traditional forms.",%202010/Press%20Release%20-%20A%20Stitch%20in%20Jewish%20Time.pdf
More Info About Some of the Artists:

Leslie A Golomb and Louise Silk - "Deez Nites Be All the Same to Me" : These two artists have created a series of quilts depicting the linked story of a Jewish slave-owning family, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Lyons Moss, and their run away slave boy.

Blog Post to The Jewish Chronicle by Louise Silk - Why Don't Jews Quilt?
Andi Arnovitz - Unchained: While Trying on New Artistic Hat, Artist Develops Series of Paper Coats:
"One series of coats is devoted to agunot, the so-called “chained women,” who, according to Jewish law, cannot remarry due to their husbands’ refusal to grant a divorce, or inconclusive evidence of a husband’s death. Arnovitz obtained and photocopied hundreds of ketubot (marriage contracts), and tore them into small pieces. With thread she affixed the fragments onto massive paper coats. The sleeves, hems and collars were sewn shut, and the threads, evidence of her painstaking process, were left hanging, a metaphor for the agunah, herself."
Robert Forman - String Pictures - "Forman's work is about the journey-his, theirs, ours. It is about transparent shadows of the real world, shifting as we shift, fortelling our own ephemerality even as they document us for posterity, playing tricks on our vision like Puck, like the trickster spirits of every culture. It is about surface, but also about deeper layers and juxtapositions-of thread, form, subject matter, symbol and meaning."
Robert Forman: The Journey of Self and Other (Surface Design Journal - Spring 2000)
Jacqueline Nicholls - "...uses art to explore traditional Jewish ideas in untraditional ways. This website shows the variety of media I use in my work - paper-cuts, embroidery, corsetry, drawings & print, clothing - and explains some of my thinking behind each piece." 
Blog -
Nancy Koenigsberg
Jane Sauer Gallery

Snyderman-Works Galleries
Elaine Reichek - combines "...vintage and current photography with stitching..."
Adam Cohen - "Embroidery offers me a way to explore imagery while still feeling connected to the piece through my hands."
Snyderman-Works Galleries

Monday, December 13, 2010

Free Creativity Coaching Sample

Many of us are familiar with Quinnn McDonald as an artist and as one who has graciously shared tutorials, but did you know that she also is a certified creativity coach as well? Coaching sessions are phone based and are scheduled to fit when you have the time to be focused.

Quinn is offering a free 30-minute sample session and states that it is:

"Not a demonstration or a pitch, this 30-minute free coaching session starts with the issues that you want to be coached on. It's a real coaching session.

At the end [of the free session], we will decide on an appropriate challenge as 'homework.' You'll ask any questions you have on coaching. There is no pressure and I won't sign you up after the coaching sample. You'll have time to think it through if you want to start coaching"
To learn more and to schedule your free session:

Imagination Works - Quinn's free creativity newsletter that is e-mailed twice a month. To sign up for it:

Creativity Ariticles - written by Quinn and available through Creativity-Portal (scroll down):

QuinnCreative: Tips, Slips, Stumbles, and Leaps on the Creative Journal - Quinn's Blog:

Friday, December 10, 2010

The Amazing Leather Work of Winfred Rembert

 "Winfred uses a canvas of cured leather to tool memories from his life.
These 'snapshots' offer an unprecedented view into the true lives of
African Americans in the Deep South only fifty years ago. The themes
present in his work transcend age, racial, gender and religious differences.
Through Winfred's work, we are encouraged to persevere and find a blessing
- to find redeption in the suffering we each experience as human beings."
- from his website

Many textile artists use leather in their work - Winfred Rembert, however, uses this "textile" as his fabric to create stunning and masterful narratives. The detailed imagery in the slices of life that he gives us from his own memories and experiences are fascinating, riveting and incredibly moving.

Family Picking Cotton - Winfred Rembert

Chain Gang (All Me) - Winfred Rembert


The Indelible Images of Winfred Rembert - Folk Art Messenger Magazine

Call Him "Artist" - includes a slideshow with 10 images of his work

Adelson Galleries - Winfred Rembert - can view 44 images of his work

Winfred  Rembert at Work - 3:17 minute YouTube video

WFXL Interview of Winfred Remnbert - 6:03 minute YouTube video

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Business Support for the Arts from Large Businesses Dropped Significantly

As we probably all could have predicted, a survey for the Business Committe for the Arts found that between 2006 - 2009, business support for the arts from large businesses "...fell from 43 percent to 28 percent, while the number that gave to any charitable cause dropped from 70 percent to 52 percent." Interestingly, however, over the same period support from small to mid-sized businesses actually increased.

To read the executive summary of the Triennial Survey of Business Support for the Arts:

Friday, November 26, 2010

Textile Related Tutorials - Part 10

Your colleagues continue to share unselfishly...

Part 9    Part 8    Part 7    Part 6     Part 5     Part 4     Part 3     Part 2     Part 1

Learning to Critique Effectively - Jane Dunnewold - Excellent article on this topic.

Bobbin Work: Dealing with Distortion - Ellen Anne Eddy

Silkscreen Mask Using Plastic - Wen Redmond

Multi-Color Screen Printing Without a Press - Craft Chi

On a Roll: Create Your Personal Mark Using Brayers - Wen Redmond

Who Wants to Color
Coloring In and Out of the Lines
On the Loose - Dealing with Distortion
Fabric Covered Beads - Twirling Betty

Gel Glue Resist Tutorial - Janice Paine-Dawes

Thread-U-Cation - Laura Wasikowski - She continues to share her excellent instructions
The Basics -
How to Make a Little Dot in 3 Easy Steps -
Snail Trail -
Stitch Placement -
Whipped Running Stitch:
Colonial Knot:
Coral Stitch:
Combining Stitches:
Tulip Stitch:

Beaded Fringe - Lyric Kincaid

Five Ways to Use Angelina Fibers - Stephanie Forsyth - Stamping; Trapping; Textures; Roving; Making Angelina Beads

Stamping - Melanie Testa - Creating stamps using Plexiglas

Carve Your Own Rubber Stamps - Alma Stoller

How to Make Fabric Beads - Alma Stoller

Fabric Silhouette Tutorial - Maria Elkins

How to do those Innie Corners - Margaret Hunt

Using Golden Digital Grounds - Quinn McDonald

Monsoon Paper: Tutorial + Variation - Quinn McDonald

Making Glue Work for You - Quinn McDonald

Gel Medium Transfers - Easier with Videos - Quinn McDonald

Using Fixatives on Your Artwork - Quinn McDonald

Monochromatic Collage - Quinn McDonald

Gallery Hanging Tutorial - Judith Ferguson

Monday, November 22, 2010

Quotable Quotes

"A man who works with his hands is a laborer;
a man who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman;
a man who works with his hands and his brain and his heart is an artist."
Louis Nizer
"Life holds no promises as to what will come your way. You must search for your own ideals and work toward reaching them....If you are willing to take the opportunities you are given and utilize the abilities you have, you will constantly fill your life with special moments and unforgettable times."
Dena Dilaconi

Until the lion tells his story, you only hear the tales of the hunters.
African proverb

Art is not for the cultivated taste. It is to cultivate taste.
Nikki Giovanni
"Ideas must be put to the test. That's why we make things, otherwise they would be no more than ideas." Andy Goldsworthy
I tamed my personal art demon – the tendency to think about painting rather than actually painting – by throwing the stuff on the blank paper and telling myself I didn't care about the end result.
I believed it and was saved.
Rich Hawk

I don't wait for moods. You accomplish nothing if you do that.
Your mind must know it has to get down to work.
Pearl S. Buck

Process trumps plans. That's why our job is called "creative."
Robert Genn

Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet.
Bob Dylan

Art is when you hear a knocking from your soul - and you answer.
Terri Guillemets

"Your art isn’t for everyone.
Once you understand this, you’ll have an easier time
finding the people who appreciate your work."
Alyson Stanfield
"I think finding your voice is making the implicit explicit.
It is making what you already know on a subconscious level
conscious and repeatable."
Jessie Carty

"I tamed my personal art demon
 – the tendency to think about painting rather than actually painting –
by throwing the stuff on the blank paper and telling myself
I didn't care about the end result. I believed it and was saved."
Rich Hawk

"With age, art and life become one."
Georges Braque

"Never be afraid to do something new.
Remember, amateurs built the ark; professionals built the titanic".