Wednesday, December 29, 2010

"Rainbow Hens"

More true to life color, before quilting
The color is too cool/blue, it is really very warm, orangey, yellow, like the photo above

I love the title of this one, it evokes multi colored chickens, but is really a photo of one "Hen and Chick" succulent. It is a closeup, centered on the petals of the plant. It was a very blah, monochromatic picture, with sharp edges, good lines and graphic quality, but boring colorwise. I manipulated the colors in Photoshop, to get different color combinations, teal/lime green, orange/violet, and red/navy. I reversed the colors into a negative, and made peach/med. blue and yellow/purple, this gave a light center instead of dark, and the edges of the petals were the opposite color. I printed five photos, each a different color. I used my computer printer to print onto treated fabric, with a freezer paper backing. I heat set the fabric with my iron, and then decided the colors needed to be perked up a bit. I used crayola colored pencils to add color to the print. I started with the main color, adding brightness and saturation in the highlights, then I added darker colors to the shadows. I left the medium tones alone, but this added contrast between the highlights and the shadows. I cut each horizontal photo into 5 strips, 2" wide, I also cut 2" strips of my own hand dyed fabric, in coordinating colors, to make a sixth picture. I swapped all the pieces around until I had a pleasing, balanced composition with each color and one piece of hand dyed. I made a tracing of the pattern onto clear plastic and used a light box to trace it onto the dyed fabric. So that when I stitched the quilting I carried the pattern on to the area that did not have a photo printed onto it. It blended so well, most people don't even know that it is not printed. The assembly was done with fusible interfacing, and fused onto muslin, in a 2 blocks across and 3 blocks down setting. I used clear nylon thread to zig zag all the edges to the muslin. Rayon thread quilting in a rainbow of colors was used to outline and highlight the edges of each petal and to shade into the center. Darker colors were then used in the shadows, to give a lot of depth. It is one of my favorite "ART" quilts. It has an abstract quality to it, while still being a recognizable object, and the multiple colors disguise the object to make it abstract.

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