Friday, June 28, 2013

Sketching with Stitches

Today I was determined to get one of my sketches into a stitched form. I tend to hold on to my ideas and not execute them, for fear of doing a bad job and being disappointed in the results.

Enough of that! My new approach is to make mistakes and learn from them and, besides, how can you make a mistake in art anyway?

I jumped right in, making a sketch directly on to some linen fabric backed with white flannel, using a Pilot 'Frixion' pen. This pen erases with friction or heat, so as soon as you apply an iron to it, it disappears! Great for embroidery! How many times have I used a purple or blue "disappearing ink" pen, only to have the marks show up again after removing them. With this pen, the marks could reappear if the piece is left in extreme cold, but, no problem - I usually don't put my embroidery in the freezer!

I machine stitched with regular black thread over the lines of the sketch, at times changing things as I went along.

Here is the back of the piece with threads pulled to the back. I had fused white flannel to the back to hide threads and make the fabric more stable. I've been doing this for a while and find that it works well.

Here we are with all threads pulled to the back, pen lines removed by ironing, and a few extra hand stitches here and there to finish it off.

I'm beginning a series of stitched sketches of women. I usually sketch from imagination, or may use a real person or magazine photo for inspiration, but I try not to directly copy any image. This one was totally free form. I love drawing people and am working on sharpening my skills. I love the irregularities of the human face. Most people have one eye larger than or higher than the other, and no one's face is absolutely symmetrical. I also like strong features. And, I must admit, I'm strongly influenced by the line drawings of Henri Matisse. They are so fluid and effortless - really gorgeous!

Well, thanks for visiting and
I hope you're having a very good day!


Michelle V. Alkerton, mixed media artist said...

Wow, beautiful work Judy! I agree, you've got to let go. I need to do that as well. I'm always worried about wasting my good paper, but what good is it if it sits in a cupboard? :)
Stay inspired!

Lyn said...

I love it, it looks great!

Libby Fife said...

You really to execute a nice economy of line and your figures are always so expressive. You sure make it look effortless:)

Libby Fife said...

I mean you really do, of course!

Simone said...

Lovely Judy! You are very adept with the sewing machine! x

Shell said...

Your sketch and stitch came out really wonderful!! Big yay for allowing yourself to do your art and not worry about mistakes.

sharon said...

Well, you sure have motivated me! As soon as I get my sewing machine cabinet reassembled after its move to the upstairs smallest bedroom, I'll be brave and dive right into practicing my free motion quilting. That's been on my "to do" list for AGES.
Love your woman's head, Judy. Can't wait to see more. And thanks for the tip about the pen.

Anne said...

Your drawings are beautiful! And translated into stitches... just lovely!

I am like you, setting aside ideas until the "right" time. Lately I've been trying to do more of the things that scare me art-wise in order to develop my skills. I've found that time and again I surprise myself! Glad you're jumping in, too.


Lorinda @ Everyday Endeavours said...

Oh, Judy! She's absolutely wonderful. How beautifully you've captured her personality in a few "simple" (ha!) lines. And thank you for the push to get my ideas out of my head and onto paper. I have the tendency to hold back, fearing my drawing skills aren't up to snuff. Well they're never going to be if I don't jump in!! xx (and thank you for your always sweet and encouraging comments this last week xoxo)

Jennifer Richardson said...

you're amazing, Judy;
those are beautiful sketches
with your clever stitches.
A wonderful July 4 to you,

Karen L R said...

fabulous. so simple, yet expressive. you are so clever, judy.