03 Jul

Stencil Blog Hop

Lynn Krawczyk is at it again. In addition to her day job, she keeps Smudged Textiles Studio humming along, has written a book, created a line of stencils, and has at least one other project up her sleeve. I’m not sure how she does it all, but I’m glad she does!

Today is about the stencils. Introducing “Marked” by Lynn Krawczyk, Artistcellar’s newest signature series artist. The pocket sized stencils come as a set and include Tracks, Commas, X’s, and O’s. They are pretty easy to identify. The small scale makes them easy to use and appropriate for many sized projects. I decided to use these simple shapes in concert with my figure drawings as it’s often nice to have some color and pattern on the page before drawing.

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I used Xs on the bottom of this page (previously washed with color).

 

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It made a nice nest for a seated figure.

 

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I liked the look of the Xs on the previous page, so I added them to this drawing after the fact. There’s no rules about when to add patterning. Sometimes a drawing needs a little something extra and stencils are a great way to add a little pattern or texture.

 

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I layered the Xs in several colors on this page. I’m using gouache because it’s matte surface takes the charcoal pencil I like to use and other drawing media well. I apply the paint with a Spouncer (thanks to my friend Deborah for introducing me to these deceptively humble little tools).

 

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I drew on top of the stenciling and then added a wash of contrasting color to highlight some of the shapes, plus a few more Xs for good measure.

 

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Using just a portion of the Tracks stencil (one track with a white pen and another with a watercolor pencil) makes a nice border for this drawing. I masked out the drawing when I painted the gold Xs to give the drawing more depth.

 

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More Tracks as borders.

 

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Tracks again — this time using the stencil with a pen rather than paint. These are sturdy stencils, perfect for spraying, daubing, swirling, drawing, and probably pretty much any way you can think of utilizing them.

 

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I used watercolor pencils with the Os stencil for this nude. A brush loaded with plain water turns the outlined Os into watercolor washes. Some Os I just filled in with pencil and left it at that, some I used with water.

 

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I think this one is my favorite. Stenciled Commas, drawing on top, a wash of aqua, and Os outlined with a white pen.

If I have one complaint, it is that the stencils aren’t repeats. I can’t paint and are and then move the stencil adjacent and have the pattern continue seamlessly. It’s a small thing, but I think it would be nice for future designs.

Like with Lynn’s book, I have the opportunity to give away one set of Marked stencils to a lucky winner who leaves a comment on this blog by 7 July. What would you make with Lynn’s stencils? Be sure to check out the other stops on the blog hop too:

June 28th – Lisa Cousineau
June 29th – Melanie Testa
June 30th – Lisa Chin
July 1st – Jen Osborn
July 2nd – Belinda Spiwack
July 3rd – Kristin LaFlamme You are here!
July 4th – Ingrid Dijkers
July 5th – Guadalupe Cabal
July 6th – Lynn Krawczyk

25 Apr

Winner, Winner!

Intentional Printing - jacket art

It’s the 25th and the Intentional Printing blog hop is pretty much wound up. There were 60 comments on my post so I had my daughter pick a number between 1 and 60. She chose seven. Pam R was the seventh commenter and she’ll be getting her very own copy of the book. Yay! Thanks to everyone for participating and I hope that many of you go out and buy the book anyway. It’s a great resource and kick in the pants for anyone ready to dip their toes into surface design.

Draw, stamp, screen print and more to create gorgeous art cloth with the help of surface design artist Lynn Krawczyk’s new book from Interweave/F+W Media, Intentional Printing: Simple Techniques for Inspired Art Fabric .

03 Apr

Intentional Printing Blog Hop

I first “met” Lynn Krawczyk through a mixed media exhibit she organized and curated about five years ago. Since then we’ve followed each other’s blogs and she’s even purchased several of my smaller artworks. Last year, Lynn invited me and a half dozen fiber artists with very different styles and approaches to contribute to her first book. I was impressed and intrigued by the variety, so of course I said yes!

Intentional Printing - jacket art

Now the book is out, and I may be a bit biased, but I think it is a treat. Intentional Printing is an easy read, but by no means simple. Lynn’s convivial tone belies tons of tips, techniques, projects, and best of all, encouragement. As the title suggests  it’s all about intention. She gets right to the point and leads the reader through her favorite printing techniques with purpose and focus in mind. It’s a book about printing on fabric, but it’s also so much more with insight into creative temperaments, strategies to avoid piles of ugly fabric you won’t ever use, and projects as a jumping off point. Plus, each chapter is introduced with something one of the invited artists made which Lynn custom printed with each of us in mind.

Grandmother’s Hospitality Book project
My contribution was this pillow featuring a swirly, root-like fabric from Lynn and a subtle organic line grid fabric.

For a little fun and insight, I asked Lynn a few questions about the book and her inspiration.

1.  I like the way you guide readers to associate color with feelings. Do you find that your own color choices change with seasons or moods?

Good question! For the most part my colors are consistent but I can easily track certain periods of my life in my artwork. Things get a little darker during harder times and I experiment more with brights that I don’t normally use when things are more upbeat. I think it’s unavoidable, that fluctuation. Our work is bound to reflect our feelings because we are so closely bound to it.

2. You say that you try to be aware and to create with intent – that you usually have use in mind for your fabric. Do you also have a favorite artist or inspiration?

That’s a toughie because there are so many artists I admire. One artist at the very top of my favorites list is Lee Krasner. I’m a huge fan of abstraction (obviously) and she was pretty regular at consuming completed artwork by recycling it into new projects. That’s something I do all the time as well and her strength and determination really speak to me. Just find her energy inspiring all around.

3.  My favorite project is the table runner. What is yours?

I have to say that I am a sucker for the desk weights/beanbags. They are an instant gratification kind of project – print the fabric, assemble, do a little stitching and boom – done! I actually use beanbags a lot and honestly? They’re cute! Can’t help myself!

4. Reading your book is like having a friend come and spend the day with you, encouraging, guiding, coaching you through your artmaking. Have you had a friend or mentor who guided you? Or, if you were to come to my house in real life, what would we work on or do if we had an art day together?

Studio time together! Yes! I LOVE working alongside other artists. There is a definite shift in work environment when more than one creative is kicking around.

I can guarantee that I would be super nosy and want to see all of your artwork. I’m borderline compulsive about holding work in my hands, love that connection. I think the biggest thing we would do is share as we work – meaning nothing would be off limits. I’m open about sharing how I do things because I believe that there is room for everyone in the art world. We all have our own spin.

There would also be chocolate. Lots of chocolate.

5.  One of the techniques in your book is to stamp with box lids. I would have never thought of doing that. Besides lids, what is the strangest thing you have tried to print with (successfully or unsuccessfully)?

My feet. Yeah, that was a great move. I got this idea in my head for a piece I was making that I could print footprints on it. So I set about painting the bottom of my feet but I didn’t pay attention to how far away I was from the piece of fabric I intended to walk on.

There was scooting across the floor on my bum and then an incredibly ungraceful shimmy to my feet. By the time I made I finally had my feet where they needed to be, the paint was mostly dry and unwilling to transfer to the fabric.

Needless to say, I’ve since decided to stick with inanimate objects for print tools!

6.   I know you love love love your coffee. Have you ever printed with it?

Yes – on purpose and sometimes by accident!

Coffee is a great way to tone down or antique colors. I don’t find it to be something that I like to use on it’s own because it’s hard to get really bold color with it. But it’s certainly useful. (And smells great too!)

Funny story – I haul a coffee cup around with me constantly and have the bad habit of leaving them everywhere, even on my print table. Once I ended up dipping a sponge brush in one without realizing it until I swiped it across the fabric!

 7.  The book seems to be geared mainly to art quilters, but you mention that printed cloth is also great for modern or traditional piecing.  I think paper and mixed media artists could get a lot out of the book too. Have you seen anyone who’s done something really unexpected with your printing techniques?

Honestly? Not yet so far but now that the book is heading out into the big world, I know someone will really goes for it!

The techniques can definitely be used on paper and mixed media art. That’s because they are all paint based and paint will stick to nearly anything!

I’ve been selling Thermofax screens for years and have made screens for all kinds of projects – fundraisers, beer clubs, underpants, baby onesies, invitations. I’m always in awe of the things that people think of to make.

What a Home Needs
With my leftover fabric, I made this little piece of wall art, repeating my favorite house with roots (and wings) theme.

Draw, stamp, screen print and more to create gorgeous art cloth with the help of surface design artist Lynn Krawczyk’s new book from Interweave/F+W Media, Intentional Printing: Simple Techniques for Inspired Art Fabric .

Leave a comment by April 25th and I will pick a random commenter to win a free copy of Lynn’s book.

Take part in our blog tour with more stops along the way at: