Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Ghost Gums

The rust dyed fabric behind the trees is from the mailbox pole. The trees are ghost gums, an import from Australia – they’re very tall, with straight, almost white trunks, and a lace-like leaf structure, right on the end of the branches. These are the two trees that drew me to the area we now live in, and are balanced by two glorious oak trees at the opposite end of our area – Summerland. (A later project!)
I used the technique described by Beth in her rust-dyed, printed fabric technique on The Quilt Show website – that’s what got me interested in all this to start with. I photographed the trees, manipulated them in Paint to get rid of the background, ironed the fabric onto freezer paper (ordered specially via the internet!), and then ran them thru my inkjet printer (HP PSC 1210). The Bubble Jet Set doesn’t arrive for another 2 weeks, so the fabric hasn’t been treated. The trees are thread-painted on using about 4 shades of brown, 2 of beige, and the leaves are about 3 shades of green.
The fence was taken from a "how to draw" book, traced with Glad Press n Seal, then transferred onto the fabric. The three large fenceposts were made using Judy Simmons "Machine Needlelace" technique on Solvy. I used around 6 shades of beige to brown. The "barbed wire" was made using Solvy, and a decorative stitch – sort of a daisy chain, and handsewn to the fenceposts. As you may gather from this, I don’t draw – but I’m really good at cut n paste!
The dry pond fabric is from the wheelbarrow, using a "contour line" image from Gloria Loughman’s book "Luminous Landscapes". The lines are threadpainted on using Mettler Amber variegated thread.
I’ve just bought Beth Wheeler’s "Altered Photo Artistry", so once I get my sewing machine back, I’ll use monofilament thread to create texture, as she suggests. I was originally going to use the rust-dyed thread I made, but this refuses to go thru my sewing machine.
I also want to create some dried grass, and pampas grass (we call it toetoe). I've removed the green "blobs" - they were meant to be grass, but just didn't work.
For a border, I was thinking of using Loughman’s diagonal squares technique, also in rust dyed fabrics.
Now that I have Beth’s book, I have a copy of Adobe PE 5.0, and I think I’m in love. Unfortunately it won’t talk to my laptop, which runs the horrid Vista, but does work on my daughters’ computer.

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