Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Peaceful Waters Challenge

Our challenge due for October was offered by Roberta Ranney. Inspiration was to come from a song composed by Bob Ranney in 1974 called Peaceful Waters.

There's a rhythm in the water flowing by
There's a rhythm in the wingbeats in the sky
Can't you feel it.  It's a thing called life
Peaceful waters flowing by

You can see it in the oaks against the sky
You can hear it in the whip-poor-will at night
You can feel it with the heron in its flight
Peaceful waters flowing by

You can see it when you close your eyes
But you can't see it when you close your mind
Don't you know we're so far behind
Peaceful waters flowing by

Peaceful waters flowing by
Deep green forest reaching up to the sky
Don't you know your soul can't die
Peaceful waters flowing by

                                               Vigilant Wader by Carol Bormann

                                                  Sac River by Dianna Callahan 

                                                Open Your Mind by Cathy Jeffery

                                               Autumn Waters by Lettie Blackburn

                                                Rain Forest by Lily Kerns

                                              Mountain Air by Donna Olson

                                                   Heron by Roberta Ranney

                                              Heron on the Water by Emmie Seaman

                                                      Imagine by Diane Steffen

                                                 Soaring by Maureen Ashlock

Peaceful Waters by Lucy Silliman

                                             Peaceful Waters by Merrilee Tieche


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Totems Challenge

Our latest challenge was presented by Sheryl Schleicher and was due at the September meeting.  The theme of the challenge is Totems.  Each person was to select an animal that had traits that represented her or had traits she wished to have. 

This is a collage of the work members brought to the annual retreat:

And the individual quilts:

Lettie Blackburn chose the loon.

For those with a Loon totem,
imagination and dreaming abilities are powerful.
Images and visions will be very lifelike
and you must separate the real from the unreal.
Loon will help you see the truth.
The Loon awakens the imagination
and reminds us that all hopes, dreams and wishes
can become realities.

Dianna Callahan identified with a meerkat. Her piece is called "The Sentinel" and represents the vigilance the members of a meerkat clan exhibit to keep each other safe.

Donna Olson's totem was no surprise.  She chose a crow - or it chose her! 
Donna completed two 12 x 12s for the challenge.

Cathy Jeffery's totem is an owl.

Carol Bormann tells us "the giraffe has the ability to know the future and understand the past while walking in the present moment. It teaches us how to increase our perceptions by viewing life from all angles. Developing these characteristics is taking me a lifetime."

Roberta Ranney identified with the lynx - the keeper of secrets and mystical knowledge.
You know the secrets
So very well,
The Dreamtime and the magic,
But you'll never tell.

May I learn to hold my tongue,
Observe like the Sphinx,
Powerful, yet silent,
The medicine of Lynx.

Lily Kerns found a book of prayers about various animals and strongly identified with the goat.  According to the prayer, the goat needs freedom and a little giddiness of heart.

Emmie Seaman says "I chose the Flamingo because it is heart healing, psychic,
a people person and flirtatious.  Since a totem can be more than one I made the second quilt with the flamingo nestled in a poppy as it is my favorite flower and my garden is a riot of red poppies every Spring."

Sheryl Schleicher chose a horse as her totem.  Her work is expressed entirely in fine quilting.

Diane Steffen portrayed her new dog Louie.  Louie is a min pin who has captured her heart.
The dog totem is a great spirit booster and symbol of the small becoming great. Study the quality of the breed of dog that has entered your life. Is it hunter, protector, companion, or playful? Each quality gives insight into the quality needed for your own life. People with this totem have a great spirit and ability to love as best friends.

Merrilee Tieche was inspired by the jaguar. 
"Jaguar enhances spiritual and psychic vision with a keen sense of awareness, pinpointing strong intuitional abilities. Jaguar shows how to embrace the gifts of the Spirit with composure, tenacity, fortitude with a complete integration of lessons learned and applying them in daily life. Are you integrating ideas and thoughts like you should? Jaguar will aid in this transition of self-actualization. He shows how to move silently, stealthily knowing when and how to react, shows empowerment, teaches how to maneuver and understand things unseen. He cuts through the illusion of separation and shows how the hurtful lessons of the past can be transformed into a higher clarity of purpose with a higher sense of self and connectedness. Jaguar's wisdom will show clarity in the chaos in the soul process of integration and shifting perspectives with balance and grace. "

Maureen Ashlock chose the horse as her totem and provided this information:
The Horse Totem
Freedom and Power
Grace and Strength
Joy and Perseverance
Creativity and Expression

The next challenge is from Roberta Ranney.  She asks that we produce a work inspired by a song written by her husband called Peaceful Waters.  The work will be due at the October meeting of UT.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Gallery at Lumberyard Art Center

Our exhibit was hung yesterday in the gallery at the Lumberyard Art Center. Following are photos after we finished.
As the gallery is approached one will see Lettie Blackburn's "Jack in the Pulpit" in the doorway on a easel. Upon entering the gallery, our "Good Grief" quilt in prominently displayed in the center of the room with a wall of art quilts behind it. 
I should have written down the name of each piece and the artist but I forgot. Oh well, enjoy.

 The art center really was an old lumber yard. This is the back half that is still awaiting renovation into a theatre.
 And this is the front half that is finished and in use. A very delightful facility.
Our exhibit opens this Friday, September 16 and will be there until October 8. Information is on our preceding post.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Lumberyard Art Center

On September 16, 2011, nine members of Uncommon Threads will open an exhibit of their art quilts at the Lumberyard Art Center in Baldwin, KS. Unfortunately that opening will conflict with our retreat so none of us will be there. I'll post pictures after we hang the show so you'll know what it looks like.
the exhibit is up until October 8, so if you're in the area, stop by. You can read all about it in the LAC newsletter and also learn about LAC at their website

Saturday, July 30, 2011

BitterSweet Challenge

Our latest challenge was revealed at our July meeting. The theme was "Bittersweet." The following picture was chosen by Emmie Seaman who said we could be inspired by the picture/design, the colors, or the word bittersweet.

Here is a mosaic of all of the 12 x 12s. Then they follow individually.

Mother's Day Gift - Maureen Ashlock
These Lilies were given to me  by my Grandsons on Mother's Day and they bloom around that day each year. I  collaged three photoshop pictures  together to make the 3 D design.

Bittersweet - Lettie Blackburn
Since I love both painting and art quilting, I decided to combine them...
and 12x12 is a good way to experiment!

Jake - Carol Bormann
The image, based on a photo by Susan Brown, shows her son immersed in a ball pit. The colors of the balls were altered to mimic the cluster of bittersweet. The technique is photo transfer and appliqué with quilted accents. 
I really enjoyed this challenge. Actually, I have had a lot of fun with exploring new avenues with all of our challenge pieces. The process is a great idea.
Butterflies and Bittersweet - Dianna Callahan

Emma - Cathy Jeffery
It is so bittersweet to have a kitty for 18 years and have to say goodbye.

Bittersweet At Night - Kathy Kansier
My 12 x 12 Bittersweet quilt portrays a basket of Bittersweet branches.  I think of the plant as one often used in folk art and it seemed right to show it in this way. I arrived at my title because I stayed up all night making this the night before it was due.

Bittersweet - Lily Kerns
My "Bittersweet" piece will serve as a class sample for five different classes:  "Stained Glass Techniques";  "Abstracting from Nature";  "Designing for Foundation Paper Piecing"; and "Almost Mondrian".  I will also adapt it for an Ozark Garden block.

Bittersweet - Donna Olson

Waiting - Roberta Raney
"My bittersweet quilt is a photo of my mother in 1952 superimposed on a picture of bittersweet.  My mother is wearing my father's Army jacket as she awaits his return from Korea.  He died in Korea shortly after this picture was taken."  I must say this little quilt is much more bitter than sweet but 'tis what it is.

Pixeled - Sheryl Schleicher
I laid a grid on the photo and then did an abstract pixel of each square using the grunge fabrics.  It was a lot of fun to do and definitely a technique I will use again just for the sheer fun of it.  Fun to quilt, too!

Bittersweet Abstract - Emmie Seaman
The background is a mosaic of torn and cut squares and rectangles of fabric, then quilted to hold them down. The two blue lines and the circles are fused on top with some decorative stitching and beads added.

Bittersweet Memories - Lucy Silliman
I returned to a style of design that I used for many of my pieces that went to judged shows.  Since I’ve given up showing, it’s a little bitter, but sweet in that I’ve moved on to other things.

Blue Grid  - Diane Steffen

Night Shade - Merrilee Tieche
I believe the 12 x 12 format is perfect for trying out new techniques as well as inspirations.  Nightshade incorporates several layers of paint, writing and fabric, giving the 2 dimensional surface more depth.