I am obsessed with creating portraits, recently. For years I have gone nose to nose with portraits made by other artists, whether these artists create with paint, fabric or mixed media. How do they do it? Could I do that? There is only one to way to find out and that is to try.
Animals are Forgiving
I have created more than a dozen, perhaps as many as two dozen animals from fabric and thread over the thirty-six years I have been making quilts. Whether I am making an owl, a cat, a highland steer or peacock, it is easy to tell what it is. However, people are another matter. Well, sort of. You can tell when I create a young boy, but can you distinguish him from other young boys? I believe the answer is yes. Certainly when I look at my Portrait of a Young Boy, I see my son, Adrian.
Unlike traditional quilts, my current portrait quilts are made to wrap around an already wrapped canvas frame measuring 12″ H x 12″W x 1.5″ D. This presents technical/design challenges. There are many ways to handle how to solve the slim 1.5″ x 12″ edges. Some fiber artists paint the canvas and then attach a 12″ x 12″ quilt to the front of the framed canvas. This can be done with velcro or more permanently with glue. I prefer to actually wrap the quilt around the frame. This means the quilt image must flow naturally from front to side.
Planning for Edges
I am a pro at planning for those edges now. Not so, when I first started. There are two key things to bear in mind. One, a quilt contains batting and is therefore too thick to pull around the edges, fold at the corners and ultimately tack to the back of the frame. Therefore, I only layer the central 12″ x 12″ section with batting. Second, the image needs to continue around the frame and to the back. I like a neat finish. So, I also hem the other edges. True they can only be seen on the back, but doing so provides a professional look.
I finished my Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilt! So, I thought I would share a quilt I finished in 2017 that includes a rainbow colored bee and is done in neutral colors. 🙂
I’m linking up to the following posts: