Ah Spring! Seeing the explosion of color all around me makes me want to paint everything.
Over the years, I’ve explored a great many techniques for adding color to fabric. Why? Because, sometimes pre-designed materials you find in stores just won’t work for a given project. Other times, you just want to create something that’s totally you.
For a fiber artist, facing a blank piece of fabric is very similar to a painter facing a blank sheet of canvas… the possibilities are endless. In fact, when it comes to surface design many of the tools available to the fiber artist can can also be used on painter’s canvas or water color paper. And, many techniques that the painter is using can be used by the fiber artist.
You may be asking what is surface design? Just what is says, simply a way to add design to a surface using a variety of techniques and media to alter appearances. These days, the term is most commonly heard amongst quilting and mixed media artists. The use of surface design has played a critical role in the recent advancement of non-traditional art quilts. Quilters are painting their designs on fabric and quilting them to create stunning works of art. You can see some of this in action by viewing the works of Susan Brubaker-Knapp.
The exciting thing is that many surface design techniques that art quilters are using can, with equal success, cross media into traditional 2-dimensional artwork and collage. The processes are fun and liberating, because they open up opportunities for experimentation. Its like being a kid again…rules are few and its acceptable to break them.
Are you curious about surface design? Do you want to find out more? Better yet, do you want to enjoy some creative play? Then join me for a class at:
6-8:30 pm, Wednesdays, April 28, May 5, and May 12
Price: $50 League Members/ $70 Non-members
Class: Surface Design Using Mixed Media
Instructor: Nanette S. Zeller
During this 3-session course, students will use creative play to explore a variety of surface design techniques using acrylic paints, watercolor pencils, Shiva Painsticks, and other tools. In class, the student can choose to apply the techniques to either fabric or watercolor paper, or experiment with both surfaces. The resulting designs can be applied to 2-dimensional surfaces, used as collage elements, or incorporated into art quilts. This workshop is intended to inspire both new and experienced artists to include surface design into their artwork.
If you want to find out more, contact the Artist League at 910-944-3979 or visit their web site at www.artistleague.org. I really hope you will join me and don’t forget to tell your friends. I’m sure you will have fun.