Sunday, October 10, 2010

Blue Repose

A while back, I experimented with charcoal on cloth.  I used one of my first drawings from my life drawing class as the basis for the piece.  I sketched with charcoal, sealed it with a matte fixative, then painted the girl's body blue ....  I did that from the back of the fabric so the charcoal lines would still be visible.  I finished it all up by coloring around the figure with watercolor crayons and misting them a bit so the colors ran.

Today I quilted the piece, which I've named "Blue Repose".  I know that some may have stitched more, but I wanted to see if I could keep some of the charcoal shading visible.   I used a variegated thread and  sketchy lines on her body, along with rayon and silk threads on the background, depending on which thread matched the color best.

In an ideal world, I wish the final shape had more white space along the sides.  When I started, this was an experiment and I didn't give much thought to the size of the fabric I was working on.  I just wanted to play.  But I'm intrigued by this so I thought it was worth finishing it up.  It was the perfect project for me to work on -- I didn't feel any pressure and it took my mind off my failures to date trying to make the ear for "Joy" (see previous posts).

Please share your comments and thoughts.  I'd love your input since I think I'd like to pursue this more.  Do you like the minimal stitching on the figure or would you have preferred more?  Do the white areas without stitching bother you?  Is the variegated thread good or not?  Does it matter to you that the drawing isn't perfect?  Does this style require a more practiced artistic hand to be successful?  You get the idea.....  Thanks!


Cindy said...

The figure of the girl shaded in blue reminds me of Matisse or Rodin. Her slight imperfections I did not notice (until you mentioned it) and i like the stitching all around, but i think the bright colors behind her come forward since they are so strong, and can be a little distracting. I would say, if you are drawn to this, keep trying! Do another one and continue playing! Also, on your Joy piece, it looks so good already - is it necessary to have the ear perfect to convey joy? I think if you left it as is with the suggestion of an ear, or filled in with more hair, the feeling of joy would still be obvious. Why make yourself struggle?

norma said...

I agree with Cindy that the background colors are a little strong, but over all it is a good composition. The quilting looks fine and the lack of it doesn't bother me. I definitely think you should pursue more of these.

Natalya Aikens said...

yes you should pursue more of these... and while I like her a lot, I feel she needs a whole lot more stitching. but that's just me...;*)

Michigoose said...

Hmm. I don't have a problem with strong background colors since the blue nude is rather had to do something in order to make her pop out and I find that the colors run your eyes around the piece fairly well. Perhaps a little lighter...but it does give the piece vitality which may be lacking if you did it in lighter/less dramatic colors. Why not do her again using various backgrounds? Or Photoshop your picture of this piece trying out various backgrounds. :) (psst. My verification word is "paloomp." What a wonderful word!!!!