...to dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free....

01 April, 2012

shaking out the cobwebs

There is nothing like an art workshop
to shake out the cobwebs
and inspire the soul.

I posted about an art workshop
Today's workshop, like that one, was taught by my friend
Natasha Kempers-Cullen
who is a fiber artist extraordinaire.

Natasha makes amazing art quilts assembled with
fabric which she dyes, paints, stamps
and then embellishes using beads and stitches and all sorts
of beautiful charms and other magic stuff.

I have always wanted to see 
how she created that gorgeous fabric.
You can't get stuff like that off the shelf.

I like to sew, I like to make quilts,
and I LOVE to fool around with paint.
I've longed for some lessons in fabric painting and stamping.
It was a dream come true for me.

This weekend we brought erasers, brayers, foam paint rollers, 
exacto knives, lino tools,
sponges, rags, a bucket,
lots of torn up sheets, plexiglass,
and anything we could find with a raised surface design
that might lend itself to fabric painting and stamping.

Tasha supplied the know-how,
the paints, the tricks, materials for stamp making,  
use of her many self-made stamps,
great music, the chocolate and the encouragement.

There were five of us, including our teacher/mentor/muse/mom/ friend.  

First, we all painted fabric, 
using various techniques which Tasha demonstrated.
We hung them up to dry when we had background covering,
and later took them down 
and added paint, stenciling, any little thing our hearts desired.

Went home Saturday late afternoon.
Got up Sunday and came right back to do some more.

Want to see the results?
I thought you would.

Here are some of the many fabric designs created today.
The artists are Nicole, Becky, Anne, Tasha, and moi.

Before you go, check this out:

Natasha produced a really nice lime colored linen shirt
which she had dripped a little bleach on sometime in the past.
Drips and drops of blah-colored fabric
not very attractively dispersed along the front.
Don't you hate when that happens--
a perfectly good shirt that acquires a 
stain and it is no longer wearable?
Well, this shirt was one of them.

Or so we thought.

She took out the fabric paint,
a brayer, scrunched up the blouse, rolled,
repeated often...
and Voila!

Ready to wear again.  
Better than new.

They should teach fabric painting in every high school!


  1. Beautiful stuff -- thanks for sharing:)

  2. i love all the fabrics - and the 'upcycled' shirt! you'll have to show us what a brayer is if you do more of this!

  3. Mike, my goodness you had a great time! Wonderful art, colours and images!

  4. What a feast for the eyes! I love these, Mike. I love the lushness of the colors here and the personalities of each of you coming out. I can only imagine the chatter going on amongst all that creativity - and chocolate.

  5. What fun, and what vibrant designs.