Friday, February 27, 2015

Fibre Fest - This Weekend

If you are looking for some inspiration this weekend, don't miss this!

Monday, February 23, 2015

New Colour, New Tool

I tried a new colour for my casuarina print, cut last year and tweaked a bit this year - deep olivey green - just like the real tree. Previously I had just printed it in white.


The print is on an oatmeal linen tea towel. For ages I have been wishing I could work out how to remove the background in my photos, or make it transparent, particularly for loading photos into my Etsy shop. Picasa, my favourite editing program doesn't have that feature yet (but it now has 'straighten' which I seem to use all the time for my regularly crooked photos), and I had mucked around using my Photoshop Elements program and the eraser tool, but it all seemed so tedious and time consuming so I didn't persevere - just admired others' photos. And then I discovered Photoshop's Magic Extractor tool while browsing my Photoshop for Dummies book (there are also a couple of videos on YouTube). Voila....

 The trick is to use a strong contrast for the background so the extraction is nice and clean. So the image above started life like this - just photographed on a piece of red card.
Then a quick task to separately identify the foreground you want to keep, and the background to get rid of, using the two little paintbrush tools in the Magic Extractor program. Easy peasy. No stopping me now.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

New Year, New Print

I am aiming to produce one new print per month - ha ha. I am already one month behind - since it is now February. This one - the lilly pilly (isn't there one in everyone's garden?) was planned and the stencil cut in December and printed last week. Another week of drying and curing and it will be ready to add to my Etsy shop. 

One benefit of being tardy - if I had produced it in January I wouldn't have been able to photograph the magnificent berries now mature on my garden plant. What a colour!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Just Time for One More Post

Where has the year gone!! Well I've certainly been busy in November and December with Etsy sales. I felt like a production line at one stage. Now catching my breath and printing more stock in time for my return after a January and part February break.

Just time to think about a new design. It's funny how the process starts - very serendipitous. I was thinking what Australian icon I could do next and suddenly I thought of the lillypilly. By chance a couple of bushes are now fruiting in the garden.


And this is the flower of this particular species

So I've got as far as a few sketches - I am just going to focus on the berries


A bit more tweeking to do and then I am ready to cut the stencil.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Official Invitation



 
And I'm featured in Weekend Notes for Brisbane - hooray. I've done a cut and paste of the article below.

Botanique Christmas Art Bazaar, Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens

by Sandy Ludinski (subscribe)
I am a freelance writer and Diversional Therapist, living in Brisbane's North West. I write for Weekend Notes, Starts at Sixty and Hub Garden. Visit my blog at babybloomin.wordpress.com to see other articles I've written.
Event: -
Botanical beauty showcased through art
Botanique, Art, Christmas, Bazaar, artists, print, textiles, jewellery, ceramics, sculpture, fine art, Richard Randall Studio, Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens, Nancy Brown, Helen King, Montse Molina
Artwork by Montse Molina


A small community of both established and emerging artists has been busy creating unique works for the upcoming Botanique Christmas Art Bazaar, being held at the Richhard Randall Studio - just in time for the Christmas season! What's so unique about this exhibit? These artists focus on a botanical theme with an acute awareness of the natural environment and a conscience of organic production methods.

Botanique, Art, Christmas, Bazaar, artists, print, textiles, jewellery, ceramics, sculpture, fine art, Richard Randall Studio, Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens, Nancy Brown, Helen King, Montse Molina
Linen wine totes by Paluma Prints
Utilizing recycled paper and re-purposed fabrics and producing botanical images on textiles, print and canvas, these artists have collaborated to create an exhibition that showcases the diversity of nature's bounty. 

On the evening of Thursday, 23rd November the exhibit will be featuring "Fashions on Parade" at 7pm. Come along and be amazed by the combination of artistic talent and the beauty of nature.

Here's a sneak peak at three of the artists who will be exhibiting at the Bazaar:

Nancy Brown is a printmaker and painter living in Brisbane. She has facilitated artist residencies in some of the more remote parts of Australia, including Weipa, Birdsville, Normanton and the Pilbara. She prints on textiles, paper and other surfaces making banners, flags and textiles for festivals and performances. She has created mosaics for seating and painted murals for and with communities. She has also created artworks with ceramics and laser cut metal. Nancy has her own blog.

Botanique, Art, Christmas, Bazaar, artists, print, textiles, jewellery, ceramics, sculpture, fine art, Richard Randall Studio, Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens
Paisley print by Nancy Brown


Helen King - Paluma Print is a small hand screen printed textiles studio situated on the shores of beautiful Moreton Bay in south-east Queensland. "My designs are inspired by the natural environment and the flora around me. Each print is produced using a reusable handcut paper stencil. This in addition to the use of water based inks means there is minimal impact on the environment. Using stencils also gives the prints a distinctive clean style." You can see more of Helen's work on her blog.

Botanique, Art, Christmas, Bazaar, artists, print, textiles, jewellery, ceramics, sculpture, fine art, Richard Randall Studio, Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens
Paluma Print - textile printing

Montse Molina is the artist behind Mon Manabu. Mon comes from Montserrat, a beautiful and enigmatic mountain in Catalunya, north Spain. Manabu means "to learn" in Japanese. "I enjoy creating images mixing my own handmade drawings, acrylic paintings and photographs. To transfer these images to a canvas or wooden surface I use a manual and old Japanese technique." Learn more about Montse here.

Botanique, Art, Christmas, Bazaar, artists, print, textiles, jewellery, ceramics, sculpture, fine art, Richard Randall Studio, Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens
Artwork by Montse Molina

Featuring fine art, sculpture, ceramics, glassware, fiber and textile art, jewellery and woodwork, the Botanique Christmas Art Bazaar is an event you won't want to miss.

Friday, November 7, 2014

All Set to Go for the Botanique Christmas Bazaar

My table at the Botanique Christmas Bazaar will be jam packed with screen printed goodies. Doing a practice run here to see what will fit.

I'm hoping to include as many examples of what I produce as I can - so there are only a few of each

Coin purses and glasses cases

Loop bags
Wine totes

 As well as a couple of shoulder bags, clutch purses and aprons plus tea towels, placemats and table runners. Something for everyone but be quick!

The Bazaar runs from Tuesday Nov 18 from 10am to Sun Nov 23 (closing 1pm) in the Richard Randall Studio, Brisbane Botanic Gardens Mt Cootha.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Wine Totes

I have made a couple of these for Botanique Bazaar at the Mt Cootha Botanic Gardens - on again from 18th November. Little printed linen handbags for wine - well why not?

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Screenprinting Silk Scarves

From time to time I revisit screenprinting scarves - I've tried only silk to date (which I'm sure I've mentioned in previous posts) and it is quite tricky because the fabric is so fine, but I guess it is only a matter of practice to perfect the technique (as it has been with my current printing on linen).

I keeping thinking scarves should be coloured and that lead to experimenting with dying the silk - using Procion dyes (but I hate these chemicals, and then I would have to try and match with screen printing inks). Then I tried painting the silk with watered down screen printing ink - a blotchy mess.

And then I had a light bulb moment - just today - why not just leave as white. And print using white inks. White on white - very cool.



A bit of a way to go before I am completely happy - in the mean time I'll road test this one. And also try printing on white cotton scarves.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Madeit Shop Closed

For various reasons (mostly the dramatic decline in activity and sales this year and last) I have decided to close my MadeIt shop and concentrate on Etsy as my online selling space (which conversely has seen a dramatic increase in activity).  It has brought home to me how very quickly the online shopping world can change - though I am not sure why. Perhaps shopping is now perceived as a global activity. And many shoppers no longer want to be constrained by physical and geographic considerations and are looking for a single global portal with sophisticated search and refinement options, rather than the time consuming activity of sifting through the multitude of local handmade shopping sites that have sprung up recently - at least here in Australia. Who knows - but it is a fascinating business to keep abreast of. Too bad about my hard copy business cards!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

New Colourways

Tea towels and placemats in new colours - a selection in my Etsy shop now