Monday, June 28, 2010

Counting Your Peas and Carrots



Richter Inspiration Fabric with Zigzags

Have you ever observed someone eating who has a "thing" about making their food come out even so that they have the same number of bites of the various items on their plate? I call this the Peas and Carrots Syndrome or PCS for short. I'm not sure if this is due to enjoying the taste of the food items together or maybe they have been told to "clean your plate" and this becomes a little game to make everything more fun.

I don't have PCS in relation to food but I do have it in relation to dye concentrate, print paste and soda soaked fabric. Yes dear reader, after I have concluded my planned dye work I often have leftovers and for some unknown reason I feel compelled to "clean my plate" and use as much of these items as I can before giving up and putting things away.

So here is how it went today. I had a large stack of failed mono-printed fabric I made during cold weather. Last week I soda soaked them and today decided to revive them and paint them all with black stripes. I completed this and realized that I had lots of dye concentrate still on hand...too much to waste and not enough to put in the fridge (not really but that's how my mind works). I still have a few pieces of the Richter Inspiration fabric I have been working with so I took a small piece of that and painted some zigzags. Then I decided I needed a companion so I pulled out another piece of failed fabric....this one a deconstructed number. I didn't have enough dye and print paste mixture so I made some more and painted the second piece. I liked it and had an idea for another piece so I pulled out a third piece but had to mix more dye which I did. This was followed by a fourth piece but I decided to mix a different color. I put too much dye on it so I then had to find a 5th piece which I laid face down on the fourth piece and made a print.






Companion Piece - Too much dye.





Deconstructed Failure with Print Paste then Thickened Dye Applied on top.
I pulled a plastic fork through the paste and dye which makes the striations.



Detail





What you see here is actually the back of piece number 5 which is laying on piece 4. The dye and the markings you see have soaked through from Piece 4.



Mono-printing fabric to fabric!
This may a new technique : )

This picture might give you a better idea of what is happening. I am pulling up the corner of the top piece of fabric and you can see the bottom corner of piece 4.

Wow! I have 5 small pieces plus the larger planned pieces. I used almost all of my print paste, all of my mixed black dye and a good portion of a couple other things......I still had to put some items in the fridge but not as many as I might have had to do were it not for my PCS.

The great thing about this is that when I work this way I feel totally free to experiment and try things I might never have thought of. Often the fabrics are what I call "special" as they have been processed two or more times. They have accrued value through use of material resources and my time but if I don't invest a little more of each of those things I will never use the fabric.

The jury is out on my 5 experiments. One looks like it will bleed to black and the others...well, we'll just have to wait and see. The aren't great as they were very wet and laying flat under very bright lights but I hope they allow you to have a peek at my "Peas and Carrots."

Thank you for dropping by. I love hearing from you and home you'll come again.

16 comments:

  1. Oh, playing is the best part of the dyeing process! Good luck with all your results!

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  2. I love doing this, this unconscious exploration of medium and mark-making. I am well acquainted with the idea that you'll work "just until this batch is gone," and then finding yourself, 2 hours later, mixing more. I hope you have some workable pieces when you're finished... if not, there's always discharge. ;)

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  3. How wonderful, Terry. Please post photos when the fabrics have been finished off!

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  4. Thank you all. I'm headed out to wash things right now. I never wait toooooo long.

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  5. I think this is creativity at its best. You don't really have time to plan things out, and your mind (at least my mind) just meanders along. I'm sure you will get some wonderful pieces out of this.

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  6. What Karen said. I think some of the best things come when I am using up paint or dye. If I out it in the fridge - it sits there forever!! LOL

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  7. Well we have "discovered" something here....we all need to play more! Thank you Karen and Gerrie, I'll try to relax and see what happens.

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  8. Seeing this makes me wanna go directly to my studio and get out the thickened dye and toys. I envy those who are productive in their passion. Inspiring!

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  9. These look great, Terry! I love the blacks and the marks. I hope the end products retain the spontaneity and exuberance of the just-dyed pieces. Playing around is the best way to make art.

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  10. Thank you Bobbie and Nancy. I washed the pieces out yesterday and was surprised how relatively clear the marks were even on the ones that looked over dyed while wet. I'll post pics later. I do think there is a clear difference for me between how I feel when I am making marks on fabric that is a rescue and a large while untouched cut of fabric.....blank canvas syndrome.

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  11. LOVE LOVE LOVE number 4,5. Stunning. Captures so much energy! Would love to see what you do with them.

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  12. Thank you Judy! I will show the washed fabric soon. I have ideas for a couple of the pieces but not 4 & 5 as yet. Love having you visit.

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  13. Yes, Terry - there is a special feeling of freedom when you take a piece of fabric you didn't like and figure you can only improve it by adding a layer or two (or at least, can't make it worse). I do it all the time, since I have so many pieces I didn't like first time 'round. Printing in layers - the best remedy. These are wonderful!

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  14. Thank you Rayna! I need to get photos on here so you can see how nice they washed out. I have two of the pieces pinned to my design wall for a new work. The layering process is golden. Thank you for your wonderful support!

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  15. What fun! Who cares how they turned out? It was worth it for the fun of it.

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  16. Thanks Vicki! It was fun but I got some nice things which I will post tomorrow. It's always a surprise and you are right, that is a big part of the process.

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