Friday, April 30, 2010

Invitation to Opening Reception

Java 4824
Sharon V. Rotz

I am excited to have the opportunity to be showing my textile art at the Monroe Arts Center - Frehner Gallery, Monroe WI. The exhibit "Over the Porch Rail" will run from May 6 - May 29.

You are invited to the Opening Reception on May 6, from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. I will be there to greet you, answer your questions and offer thoughts about my work.

See you there.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Seeds of Good Deeds

The Seeds of Good Deeds
2010 - Sharon V. Rotz

As the trees come alive with bright new leaves, I am enriched with a re-newed spirit. I love spring.

Soon, the leaves will form a sheltering canopy over my head. I will spend my days outdoors enjoying the beauty surrounding me. I feel blessed and I attempt to reflect that in my quilting.

Even if my projects aren't perfect, I am learning and growing. I learned that angelina can be over-pressed and it loses its luster (the tree trunk), but I continued anyway, and will remember the lesson for next time.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Lecture in Madison

I had a lovely time last evening with the Mad City Quilt Guild in Madison, WI. I had the privilege of sharing my quilts and discussing art principles as related to quiltmaking in a lecture "Off Balance and Out of Sync". The Mad City Quilters are a talented group who are busy practicing their skills and stretching out to help others in the community.

Obviously from the fact there are no pictures to company this posting, I have to work on photography skills. The great problem I encounter is getting that camera out of my bag and into action.

Lesson for the day: Do not simply own a camera, use it!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

I spent time cleaning and reorganizing in the past few days. I don't know how things get in such disarray. I don't plan confusion. But there it is, as I lift my head from my project. Things seem to love finding remarkable hiding places while I am busy working.

A few days ago, I found the roll of blue painter's tape that had disappeared for so long that I went out and bought two new rolls. It was in my fabric closet on a shelf next to some hand-dyed fabric. How did that happen? Was it bonding with the blue hand-dyed fibers? Or did it have its eye on that luscious grape silk?

This little tile was fun and combined several techniques. Do you see me in it? Wandering around, looking for my tools? I didn't start the project with that in mind but maybe its karma.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Playing with Angelina


Sharon V. Rotz

Of course, like so many things in life, you can't stop once you start. This proved to be true again when I started playing with the Angelina fibers.

When I fused them onto this piece of fabric, they became a jellyfish. I free-motion quilted my shape and used silk ribbon to make french-knots. The white background wasn't working so I painted it with diluted Dyna-flow paints and added embroidered cross-stitches.

Do two 7" projects make a series? They are certainly a start. Will there be more to come?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

On a Small Scale

"Blowing in the Wind"
2010 Sharon V. Rotz

It is exciting to try new techniques, but there are times when I don't want to be committed to a large project. I had some angelina fibers that were waiting to be used. In combination with a bit of fusing and some embroidery stitches, I created this 7" tile.

It was fun. It was quick. It drew me into trying new ideas.

I think it will be one of many other small projects. I gave me the chance to explore and be done! And, finishing a project is, oh, so good!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Before You Pick up the Hammer

Seriously, I am definitely not suggesting that you nail your quilts to the wall. If you are this point, its time for best friend quilter intervention.

No one to talk to? Contact me and I will talk you through the moment. We, quilters, have to stick together and work out our issues until peacefully we can again pick up our needles.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Hanging Rods

The project of making hanging rods has so far been - well...... a project. But now that I have my wood, it will just be a few simple swipes of the brush and I will have the rods sealed and I will be back to my quilting.

After carrying things outside (to work in a well ventilated space) and to enjoy the beautiful spring day, I am set. Oops, forgot the paint can opener. Another trip. Maybe I should have a cloth or rag. Another trip. I'm thinking - it's all good exercise!

I open the can of sealer. Oh my, it appears there is a longevity issue going on here. If you don't use the product for a while, it forms a 'rubber' coating on the remainder of the sealer. Not a problem, I'll just use my stirring stick to push threw it.

Forgot the stirring stick, another trip. Hm... it appears that if you haven't used the product for a really long time, that coating becomes very thick. My stirring stick isn't working. Not wanting to make another trip - enough with the exercise-- I attack it with my paint can opener.

This finally does the trick but not without taking off the skin of my knuckle on the edge of the paint can. Another trip into the house to try to stop the bleeding. A little sympathy from my helper, and I am back to the job.
On goes my rubber glove to turn and handle the wet board, and I am sealing away. I'm feeling a little sticky and look down to see my glove is disintegrating (only the finger tips, mind you) and my fingers are gluing to the board. Apparently, rubber gloves covered with sealer also have an issue with longevity.

The end of the story is that I have persisted and finished the job, but next time just pass me the hammer and I am nailing those quilts right to the wall. Job done!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

How do you hang your quilts?

On the excellent advice of a fellow art quilter, I started using flat wooden rods to hang my quilts. The flat boards hang nicely close to the wall and there are no rod bulges of the front of the quilt (like you may have from a round rod).

I use pine lattice strips, 2" wide x 1/4" thick, which I then seal with a wood sealer. These are cut about an 1" shorter than the top of the quilt and hanging holes are drilled in the ends.

I have always been able to get these easily at all the stores that stock lumber. I was running out so off I go to my usual store. Nothing! A second store, nothing! Suddenly, I've found I couldn't get my favorite 2" wide strips anymore. All they handled were narrower strips that seemed a little wimpy for my large quilts.

Was I the only one who needed this size? Weren't the 6 strips that I bought at once enough to keep them stocked? Was my contribution to the lumber business to be ignored?

Since the stores are a half-hour drive away from home, I did buy a few narrower ones anyway. I didn't want to miss the opportunity and have to travel back again because I couldn't get anything else.

Well, not to give up yet, the next day I traveled 30 minutes in the opposite direction. One more lumber store is in my sight. Success! Sort of success, anyway. At this store, I found some that were a compromise. They were not 2" wide but they were wider and less wimpy than the others I had found.

Now to seal them and get them cut for my quilts.

At this point, I am thinking that it would have been much easier just to nail my quilts, sans rods, right to the wall.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Getting ready for a Lecture

On April 26, I will have the opportunity to speak to the Mad City Quilt Guild in Madison, WI. I love being able to share my quilts and quilting experiences with others.

As I am preparing for my lecture, I am starting to hear rumbles from my closet. I hear the gentle sounds for sliding and a few bumps in the background. You see, my quilts are all inching their way closer, slyly jockeying for position. They are each trying to cover the nearest competitor.

Why is this all going on? Because, of course, each of my quilts wants to be selected and taken along on a new adventure. They each want to show off their finest for a room full of quilters. They want to be held up. They want to be admired. They want to be examined. They want to be questioned.

Yes, and at the end of the evening, they are so puffed up with pride, they never fit back into my suitcases!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

From Inspiration to Completion 7

The final step to completing my art project is to wrap it over a 12" canvas and secure it to the back. The corners are very important because I want this to be as professional as possible. A little extra manipulating , tucking and folding accomplishes the task and the artwork is ready to go.

Capturing the Sun - 2010 - Sharon V. Rotz

If you would like to bid on this or other 12" artworks, mark May 14th on your calendars. This is the date of the "Art by the Foot" fund raiser for the Center for the Visual Arts in Wausau, WI. See you there!

Monday, April 12, 2010

From Inspiration to Completion 6

Capturing the
Sun - Beading

Sharon V. Rotz

Small touches can often push an artwork to the next level. I love to add small details that may not be immediately noticed. In this case, I chose to add glass beads trailing across the surface.

Perhaps these are drops of dew or rain drops glistening after a sudden shower. Where does your imagination lead you?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

From Inspiration to Completion 5

The quilting is completed. It seems like my design is too small for the background, but remember this project is to be mounted on a gallery wrap canvas. I wanted to have enough surrounding fabric to wrap around the edges and staple onto the back.

With each step along the way, I get more excited about the finished result. This is the joy of creating.

Friday, April 9, 2010

From Inspiration to Completion 4

I am continuing the quilting on the leaves. The tiny circles are completed on the silk portions of each leaf. Veins were added to the center of the leaves and down the stems.

The background was enhanced with echo- quilting, outlining and popping out each leaf. Additional leaves were quilted in the "empty" sections of the background. This serves two purposes. First, to add extra detail (that may be only seen upon close inspection) and second, to keep the texture continuous over the quilt (helping the quilt to lay flat).

Thursday, April 8, 2010

From Inspiration to Completion 3

the Sun

Sharon V. Rotz

I have cut and fused the leaves to the background. The wonderful color change of the hand-dyed silk creates the look of shading across the leaf surface.

To add additional texture to the leaf, I am free-motion quilting small circles.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

From Inspiration to Completion 2

Fabrics for Capturing the Sun
2010 Sharon V. Rotz

Choosing the colors and fabrics is always a high point of working on a project. This is the magical moment for me. What choices will fulfill my mental picture? Or will I change that mental picture based on a fabric that I have found?

For this project, I chose an over-dyed print created by my friend, Suzanne, for the background. I love the graphics of the print and how this will play against the leaves I will put on it. The leaves will be made from other fabrics in my collection. The green was also dyed by Suzanne and the yellow/red/purple is a fabulous piece of silk hand-dyed by Frieda Anderson. Who needs to be able to dye their own fabric when they have friends who do such a marvelous job?

At times, it takes a minute to cut into a luscious fabric. It has to be admired for its beauty. Then the scissors call and with a few snips it becomes a new creation.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

From Inspiration to Completion 1

Inspiration for Capturing the Sun
2010 Sharon V. Rotz

How does a artwork progress from inspiration to completion?

I am participating in a unique fund-raiser for the Center for the Visual Arts in Wausau, WI. It is "Just for the Art of It- Art by the Foot". Artists participating in this silent auction are given a 12" x 12" canvas on which to create an artwork. These uniformly shaped canvases are displayed together in a grid formation at the event. Each canvas is then sold to the highest bidder.

This year I have chosen a simplified leaf design for my subject. I will keep you updated on the progress of my artwork.

Friday, April 2, 2010



On this Easter weekend, may you be filled with joy!

This is my Easter quilt filled with meaning for me. The three lilies represent the Trinity; the Father , the Son and the Holy Spirit. The cross is broken down and represents my pathway to God; with curves and bumps along the way. The crown of thorns has burst into bloom and all creation sings.

Enjoy the your family and friends as you celebrate together.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Moment of Joy

A Moment of Joy
14" x 19"

Enjoy a breath of new life as the world comes alive with soft breezes and fragile blossoms.

This small wall quilt was created from pieces left from larger projects. It is made entirely of machine pieced hexagons and machine quilted with metallic thread.

This piece and other fabric artworks are available for sale.
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