Saturday, July 9, 2011

Grape Almighty! The saga continues...with sunprints.

There's a lovely grapevine growing on the side of our garage, and lately I've been using its broad, veined leaves to make sunprints.

This grapevine was growing on the garage when we bought the house in 1986.  If we were serious about using the grapes, we would cut it back every year, because grapes only grow on new vines.  Oh, well.
To make a sunprint, first you slather your fabric with paint.  I used Pebeo Setacolor transparent paints--many thanks to Mickey Lawler for introducing me to those paints and to the sunprinting technique.  I mixed a dark teal and a periwinkle for this project and pinned the fabric to some pieces of foamcore board to keep it from blowing away.  Once the paint is on the fabric, you place the leaves, or whatever you have, down into the paint.  For extra adhesion, you can also slather more paint onto the leaves after they're on the fabric.  It holds them down a little better. I even put a few rocks on the leaves to make sure the wind wouldn't lift them.

 After the sun retreated from the picnic table where I had done this, I lifted the rocks and the leaves and got these results:

Next I decided to make some grapes.  I used fabric I had dyed with grapes a few weeks ago, along with the
other members of the CT Fiber Arts Collective.  Many thanks to Carol Eaton for offering her home and showing everyone how to do this.

I used Misty Fuse to stick these grape images down to the background.  Then I used free-motion stitching to sew them down.

I'm not very good at free-motion stitching.  It takes a lot of practice.
By placing pieces of muslin on the back, I can then cut little snips in the muslin and stuff stuffing into each grape and make them three-dimensional.  

My next sunprint, a few days later, was a different piece:  the backing of another quilt I'm working on. I mixed Setacolor paints in a dark spruce green and put ferns onto it along with pieces of hemlock and arborvitae.

Ferns, hemlock, and arborvitae are smooshed into the painted fabric, then more paint is slathered on top of them.  I held all the pieces down with pins.

This was the result after the piece spent time in the sun:

It was out there so long that birds pooped on it.  No matter--the poop didn't make a mark, and I just flicked it off.  As a mother of three, after having cleaned up many intestinal products, I'm not scared by this stuff.

1 comment:

  1. As the old adage goes, "Never let a little poop.... ruin your glorious sunprint." -Socrates