Sunday, 31 January 2010


I am afraid there are too many pieces for me to show them all in one go but will keep adding a couple every now and again. The 'Totem Poles' are carved out of wood and consist of approx 6 sections standing approx 6m tall. There are 7 in total, 6 done by males and one female.
The soccer player is a collage in 'plastic' waste. There are two of these and are very cleverly done.
I agree, our theme is proving very stimulating. I am seeing 'connections' every time I open my eyes and find it hard to stay focused and keep on track with my original plan.

Connections - Rivers

It was -21C when I took the dog out for a walk this morning.  But sunny and beautiful.  There is a widening of the St Lawrence river near us which is called Lac St Louis.  The river is mostly frozen over but a warm patch last week must have opened up water in the main channel.  So our "lake" is frozen, but way off in the distance with the sun rising behind it is all the mist coming off the open water.  Quite lovely.  And no camera.   I'm not sure my camera would have been happy in that cold!  But I started thinking about connections - the river flowing from central Canada out to the Atlantic Ocean, and all the people who have used it - from native Indians, to explorers, trappers, settlers who often had no other form of road, now recreational users - sailors, ice-boaters, fishermen.    

This is not necessarily what I'm going to work with.  I just see connections everywhere now.  Even on the ski hill, I was thinking about how all the runs were interconnected and all the people flowing down them who now have a connection to each other.  I could go on.......

Saturday, 30 January 2010

More 12" Squares

Jamie Fingal is making 12" squares which will be donated to SAQA later.  Always interesting to see how other people work with the 12" square. 



Hi Phil, I can't seem to leave a comment for you on your post.  

What a lovely piece of work.  And nice to see attention to new works.  Do you have any other close-ups of the centre?

Friday, 29 January 2010

Interactive Art in South Africa

Our local Guild was privileged to be granted a tour of the 'Art' in the Presidential Suite, etc of our new Soccer Stadium in Durban on Monday.

This piece was probably the most amazing for me. It is an interactive piece made by a french artist now living in SA. It is made of wood and metal and by pulling the large gold leaf on the right the orange petals move out and expose the middle which is layers of people made out of metal (right hand picture). Carol Brown, the lady in the picture, along with a panel were given the task of choosing the works of art. The majority of the works are from up and coming young artists or from Centres around SA which have been set up to help empower the local people in the area such as the Hillcrest Aids Centre (which is not far from where I live) who have a wonderful beading group.

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Using TAP

To all- Has anyone used the product "TAP" ? The image is pretty good but when I tried to get rid of the rather plastic surface- no luck. I left it soaking for several hours, tried a little soap in one corner but to no avail. Instructions are very thorough up to that point but rather vague on how to get a softer hand . Unless someone has a better idea I think I will throw it in the washing machine.

dianne's quilt

i love it dianne. did you do it on your bernina? what color is it to be? i absolutely love it white. i love the detail, design and intensity

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Phoenix Feathers

Here is the final quilt, before dyeing.  Lots of work, and I know what I'd do differently next time!

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Negative space

I've really discovered the meaning of negative space.  I am doing a design with feathers and suns (phoenix is my theme) and thought I was being quite brilliant, until the entire design was quilted and then I looked at the unquilted parts and wondered how I was going to make the design show, not the unquilted sections.  The picture shows bits of both.  So I am going cross-eyed with tiny stippling.  Had I realized all this, the "flames" would have been much fatter.  

I realize that with the pic something else may come to mind.  I may have to rename it b--bs and boas. 

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Update from Houston

Some of you will have seen the exercises I did in Ann Johnston's class at Houston and I though you might like to see finished pieces.  The inspiration was a couple of postcards of Art Nouveau wrought iron work - one a staircase in France and the other part of a gate by Gaudi in Barcelona.

These two started off identical and had to be finished differently.

There was this one which carried on the theme.

and then there was this dragon's wing.

The last piece isn't finished as I can't decide whether to cut the smaller piece with the original curved lines or not.  It is supposed to go on the cream coloured background piece which I have stitched with lots of lines.  The little piece is shown much larger than it is actually by comparison.  No hurry, they were excercises in Line and Shape.



Thursday, 14 January 2010

Started the year by ticking off one more wish on my bucket list. The in thing in SA at the moment are these forest canopy tours. They take you to the top of the mountain and you slide between platforms until you get to the bottom. On this particular tour there were 8 slides. Fortunately the weather held on for us before the mist came in but unfortunately it meant all the bird life had disappeared and settled in for the afternoon. Still thrilling but not very flattering.

Friday, 8 January 2010


I know this isn't very exciting, but I was reading Sandra Meech's latest book and she talked about doing one minute sketches.  So here is my first.  Based on a photo I took of an abandoned factory dock in Alaska.  And I made the little right angle paper pieces to show only the section I wanted to use.  

I'm trying very hard to spend an hour a day in my sewing room.  Not always getting there, and sometimes just cleaning the mess, but I'm sure progress will happen.

Thursday, 7 January 2010

Keeping up to date - Part 2

I have been searching for help to get RSS feeds to each of you and think that as we all have different computers and versions of various programmes that there isn't a 'one size fits all' solution to the idea.  I have just gone into the settings of this blog and I think I may have solved the problem by telling it to let each of you know when someone adds a comment.  This may not work for posts, though - we'll have to wait and see.

Hi Venetta, good to hear from you.  I bet you're not freezing like some of us!  It was minus 8 here this morning.  If any of you southerners need a bit of cold weather to cool you down, just say the word.

Cheers,  Hilary

Monday, 4 January 2010

Hello All 12- I'm not sure if this post will work, but I'll try. I've come up with a good idea of what my first project will be, but the trick will be to translate my mind's image to fabric! Also, still working on getting a photo with my name, everything in good time. Ellen


Hi everyone

We had a few days of R&R at the cottage and went skiing - the weather and snow conditions were perfect.  Now it's time to buckle down and figure out how I'm connected - right now I want to make sure my head is still connected to the rest of me.  My thoughts are going off on so many tangents.  

Lists - that will be where I'll start.  Do any of you make art notebooks?  Every time I open a new book to start I'm too intimidated.  If you do, would you kindly share a page or two to inspire.

All the very best to all of you for a great 2010.


Sunday, 3 January 2010

Staying up to date - creating a feed to our blog

Now that we are all registered, I would like to let you know how to stay up to date with Posts and Comments left by the other members of the group as soon as they are sent.  There is a simple way through what are called RSS feeds.  There are a couple of different systems but it may be simpler if you use the little red/orange square icon on the tool bar at the top of your screen. It has a dot in the left bottom corner and two concentric arcs around the dot.

First go to our blog on the internet  You don't have to sign in.

Now locate the little icon on the internet tool bar and click on it; it will open a window with a box of text with a cream background at the top of this window.  The last line of text in the box is 'Subscribe to this feed'.  Click on this (it has a green plus and a gold star) and another window will pop up. Do not tick the little box which asks you if you want to add this feed to your 'favourites' list.  Then click on 'Subscribe'.  Now you will receive an email every time one of us adds some to our blog.

Another little tip is to open our blog and click on 'Favourites' (gold star in the top left of my screen).  This opens a little box which asks you if you want to 'Add to favourites ...' Click and it will open another window where you click Add.  Now you will have a shortcut link to our blog listed  in 'Favourites' and a click will save you having to remember and type out the full address.

 My apologies if this doesn't apply to you Apple Mac owners.  I'm sure that Rosie and Dianne have already worked this one out.  And some of the members will have some vague idea from the talk/lecture in Houston where RSS feeds were mentioned.

It's awfully quiet out there...


Friday, 1 January 2010

Happy New Year - We are officialy launched!

Happy New Year everyone!  Did you realise it was a special 'blue moon' month yesterday (two full moons in one month)?

So 2010 is here and we have officially launched Dianne's theme 'Connections'.  Please use this blog to share your thoughts and any photos you find that either inspire you on this theme even if you have discarded them or come to discard them later.  The only 'secret' thing about this challenge is the image of everyone's final quilt in it's entirity and your final inspiration.  You may give away clues - not for people to actually guess but to tease the members.

Let's make this a chatty group where we share our ups and downs along the road to 31st March.  It would be a shame if we only heard from each other once every three months. 

This whole blog thing is new to me as well as to a lot of us and it will take a bit of getting used to.  I'm thrilled that we have have got this far and I believe that the more we use the blog the easier it will become.  If you start a new talking point please use the 'New Post' button once you have signed in, but if you are commenting on what someone else has posted please use the comment box under her posting.

So I wish everyone a peaceful, bright, fulfilling and creative 2010.