I rearranged all of the patches for FOTY 2017 and am feeling much better about the layout. I still have some design problems, but I feel like I am finally making good progress and am not feeling so much design despair.
The white and light patches will fill in the top of the piece to make it square.
Yes, colors need to be rearranged a bit and I need to slip in a column of turquoise, but otherwise I think this is basically the layout I will use. It is much better than my previous idea.
I know Angela loved the subway tile layout, but as a design concept, it wasn’t working. I may try that layout with smaller patches.
Again, my design wall cannot contain this series of quilts. I can’t tell you how frustrating this is. I have to figure out how to add 3 more columns to this piece without design wall support.
This might be the beginning of FOTY 2019. The pieces are the same size as FOTY 2018 as I have the Ellsworth Kelly idea and I might want to do one with black squares and one with slate squares. I could also combine the two and do a FOTY 2018/19. I am getting behind now that FOTY 2017 is not jelling. I could probably skip FOTY 2017 and get to FOTY 2018, but that seems wrong to me.
I resorted the patches and have started to arrange FOTY 2017 on the design wall. It isn’t going well.
Why? I don’t know. It just isn’t working.
I did some math and am thinking I need to make the piece 18 rows by 18 columns to make it square, though that does not use all of the patches. I could make it a little off square and make it 19 rows by 18 columns, but that would use more patches, which is my goal.
Sonja gave a short presentation on Composition at the CQFA meeting on Feb. 2. Sonja is a really good artist and works very hard to get better. In 15-20 minutes, I learned so much about composition that my head was reeling. I talked about it with a number of people that I know. I was really excited.
First she talked about 8 Common Armatures. I had no idea what this means, but she showed us examples of the different armatures, which are arrangements of art on a page. The 8 are:
She also told us to work with intention. I took that to mean don’t just slap anything up on the quilt. She said to identify a center of interest and emphasize it, then she told us how.
Most of the class was taken up with Value. This started out to be a problem for me. For some time I have been irritated when people have said “Value does all the work and color gets all the glory.” Mostly, this saying has irritated me because nobody who said it could tell me why. I have ignored that saying since the first time I heard it.
Actually, I haven’t, but I was doing it intuitively and just using contrast. Contrast has a lot more to it than only value. You can review it in the design series episode on contrast.
First, we have to define value and contrast:
Definition of Value: Graduations of light and dark. All colors have an inherent value.
The difference is a mind bender, but there is a difference.
Now we can get on to my epiphany.
In this presentation she talked about value patterns. She showed a diagram of 14 different examples of values in a composition. Each diagram shows 3 rectangles on a larger rectangular surface (presumably the paper or canvas or quilt). Each rectangle is either black, medium gray, light gray or white. In show different arrangements of these rectangles. Sonja showed us a page in Strengthen Your Paintings with Dynamic Composition. You can see what I am talking about a little bit in the arrangement of rectangles in the example on Jacob Bromeo’s site. You can see how the darker rectangles come forward.
There is a lot more I could say about this class. I have some books from the Library. I have some articles to read. I have some blogs posts to update.
Sonja recommended the following books. I got some of them from the library and am powering my way through them.
Sonja does watercolors as well as make quilts. The above list is from her watercolor class, so there are things you have to ignore. The material on composition and value cross over from watercolor to quilts and are relevant.
More imagery from my Disney trip. This was a new image that I had never seen before and it really appealed. The detail is fabulous. In hunting around for an image for today, I thought of this. It didn’t turn out to be great for color, but I think some of the palettes are interesting.
Of course the default palette is neutral heavy! Still there is that Sea Glass (great name, don’t you think?) fabric that lightens up the piece. Also some of the other colors have blue and purple twinges (undertones?), which makes the palette look at little less dark and depressing.
The first palette I made is a little all over the place. It isn’t very cohesive. Of course, I like the Lake and Niagra fabrics. It is interesting that the color names are related to water, though perhaps not surprising. I am not a fan of the Rose. It looks sick to me.
I went straight to monochromatic, which was marginally successful. I ended up with two of the same fabrics. C’est la vie. I do like the blues. I think my favorite is the Azure, but the Robin’s Egg is nice, too.
Palette n.3 is all over the place as well, though not a mess, I think. I don’t remember seeing Natural before. I have done a lot of palettes, so I could just not be remembering. The Wasabi looks like sunshine yellow on the bottom, which I like. It has more a green tinge on the side. The Garnet does not have enough red to look Garnet to me. I think it looks more plummy.
N.4 might be my favorite. It isn’t quite monochromatic, but stays well in the cool shades realm. I like the way Surf looks more purple on the bottom. I think it adds to the palette even though I think one of the websites used to create this might be off. I think the lights look really good.
Finally, I decided to get out of my comfort zone and create something with more gold. Palette n.5 heads into the neutrals pretty quickly. I am not a very big fan of this particular palette, but it is different and it does remind me of Mrs. K’s gold Spiky 16 Patch.
I got back from a trip with my SILs and nieces to Disneyland and California Adventure on Sunday. As usual, I was overwhelmed by visual stimulation. I have previously written in couple of places about the colors and motifs I see at the parks.
I do think I posted a photo of this mosaic/tile before, but I can’t find it, so we are doing it again with PlayCrafts, though we will just be using a small piece as I may need to use another piece in the future.
I will call the piece we are using the ‘Grapefruit Experience’.
The default, surprisingly, was not all neutrals and included some quite lovely blues.
The first palette was created with just a few tweaks to the default palette. I like the Kona Marine and Caribbean combination. I am not very fond of the other colors, though Bright Idea is interesting.
In palette n.2, I tried to go for a light palette without being a neutral palette. In the end I kept the Hyacinth and Coal. I like both of those hues, which look like tones of purple to me.
The green I added to palette n.3 was inspired by the #GirlScoutHearts project on Instagram. I am not much of a green fan, but this palette might be a favorite. I like the Turquoise, the Royal and the Lavender, especially. I think the whole palette hangs together well.
With a little tweaking, I got a nice golden yellow. It goes well with the Kona Jamaica, which is one of my favorite tones.
This image had just the right amount of opportunity for playing with color.
I really, REALLY wish Kona had less ravely greige goods. some of their blues are fantastic, even adjusting for computer differences. N.5 is the monochromatic effort.
I realized I would be able to create a yellow palette as well.
I also tried on a neutral palette. I could resist.
I really should have been packing for two trips I was taking, but instead I cut fabric. Now I have a completely empty ironing board and a lot more pieces to add to my various boxes. Future projects: here I come!
I finally got enough squares to make an interesting post for you. The last time I posted was in August, so not horrific, but long enough. I am not cutting up fabric and the pace I should be. I keep just piecing.
You’ll notice the MetroScape fabrics mostly missing. I am waiting to finish the top before I cut up many squares, because I’d rather have those fabrics missing from FOTY 2018 than not be able to finish the MetroScape quilt. I think I’ll have plenty.
I’m always looking for photos with the most color possibilities. This week is no exception. I took this photo in Portland. The umbrellas were hanging down from the ceiling, covering the ceiling.
It doesn’t have as many colors as I would like, but until I start playing with the Palette Builder, I always think the photo I chose has more colors than it really does.
The Kona Earth looks like a cocoa color to me. Surprisingly the tool put some color into the default palette. I suppose it would have been really weird if it ignored the pink umbrella completely. It didn’t do much with the green umbrella.
I took charge of the pink to see how much pink I could get out of the one photo. I was surprised that I got quite a lot. You can see all the dots are only on the pink umbrella.
I went a little broader in my second palette. I like that Cotton Sage blue. Sage is green to me, but whatever that color is, it lends a brightness to an otherwise neutral palette.
This 3rd palette is virtually the same as the one above except for a few tweaks. I wanted to just move the circles a little bit and see what came up. The green created Evergreen, which really looks black. I suppose I agree with the Desert Green name. Colors in the desert can be very pale, bleaches looking. The neutral palette is softer, I think.
The fourth palette reminds me of dessert. The neutrals have a richness to them, especially the Kona Cinnamon.
In general, this photo is primarily generating neutral palettes with me teasing out the least bit of color to make them my own.
I took a few photos at a special exhibit held at the deYoung in late March.
I can’t remember the name of the exhibit. They do it every year and it is up for a very short time. Someone chooses artworks and matches them up with floral designers who create a floral arrangement that matches, reflects, goes with – or something – the artworks. I had a hard time seeing how the floral designs went with the artwork. You never know what the artist sees. I find that with my own work.
I have many pictures from the show, but the pink in this one intrigued me. I really created a lot of palettes and could have created more. There is a lot of scope for color in that arrangements. I had to stop because I knew you wouldn’t read about 50 palettes. I also didn’t want to write that much.
The first palette, as usual is the default palette. This one is seriously neutral and somewhat depressing considering the vibrant colors in the bouquet. I noticed that the circles tend to be placed towards the edges.
I made sure my first palette included some brights, or at least cheerful solids. I kept in some of the neutral feel as I was trying to show progression. I don’t like that Kona Cotton Latte much. It sticks out like a sore thumb.
I have up on progression when making my first monochromatic palette, the pink. I was able to make two (yes, TWO) monochromatic palettes this time: a blue and a pink. I went for broke since that Kona Latte fabric really bugged me.
I went back to progression when I made palette n.3. I thought blue would look great with pink, so I kept some of the pinks and added some blues. I put more blues in as I didn’t want to make the palette exactly equal. I probably couldn’t have done another one that had more pinks than blues, too.
This one led to the monochromatic blue palette pictured above.
I tried to get away from my default blues and do something different. I think the anchor fabric in this palette is the Kona Cardinal. I didn’t completely succeed with this effort, because the Wasabi and Butterscotch are very similar. I am not sure the arrangement has need of that much of those tones.
I wanted to improve on the palette above, so I made minor adjustments. Chestnut Palm and Spice are not favorites. This is not my kind of palette.
I tried to improve the palette above again. I think I did a better job. The Grass Green and Deep Rose are much better.
I think n.8 is the best iteration of the last few. The palette reflects my personality. The pink brings out the best in the Sunflower. I think Taupe is a supporting actor and I wouldn’t put a lot of that in a quilt.
You may see other arrangements from this show in the future.
I was really happy to find this photo. I was looking for it for some reason a little while ago. I saw this sign in a coffee shop years ago and the motif sticks in my mind as some interesting and different. The colors are interesting, too.
The default colors this time tend towards purple, which I like. This palette would make a good outfit.
In my first palette, I went for brights and the image did not disappoint. The palette itself doesn’t hang together very well, but the colors are bright and that is something.
I wanted to refine my first palette and try to get it to hang together better. This is, mostly, softer and tends towards warm colors, except for the Kona Royal, which doesn’t really fit.
I tweaked the colors from above a little and this palette is much more cohesive. That bright pink and the Kona Magenta (which looks more like purple/violet to me) really dominate, but not in an awful way.
I decided to focus even more on the pink and purple. Except for the Cheddar, which I must have forgotten about, the pink and purple are the stars. Many of the colors showed up in n.3 and show up in n.6.
The default palette wasn’t a neutral palette so, in the spirit of the Palette Builder, I created one.
I had to try a monochromatic palette and this time I went for pink. I had a hard time finding different pinks as the Bright Pink dominated.
Yellow doesn’t show up much in the images I choose, so I wanted to take advantage of the yellow in this image and try to create another monochromatic palette using yellow.
In another attempt to make a monochromatic palette, I chose the orange area. It is small, between the pink and the yellow, but I thought I might be able to get a range of peachy-oranges. I did sort-of.
I took a picture of this bar area before this restaurant stopped carrying gluten free noodles. I finally dug the photo out, because of the bright and cheerful nature and had some fun creating palettes.
The default palette was less neutral-y than usual, which was a pleasant surprise. The red tones are an interesting addition. I also noticed that the program didn’t stick exclusively to the edges.
The monochromatic palettes were interesting. Yes, I made more than one this time. As you can see there are both cools and warms. I know the green is not warm, but it has a kind of warm feel to it – a bit mossy, I guess. Perhaps there is a yellow undertone giving it a bit of a warm feel.
I like some of the blues in the blue palette quite a bit.
The two pink-red palates are similar, but a little different. As usual, I was really surprised at the colors that came out of the tool.
I really played around with the other palettes. I really like the blue and gold in palette n.2. The rest of the colors are kind of meh, though the greys alone or as a background would probably be great.
The one above looks like a Japanese stationery store or a bag of sweets or a girl’s party when she is just getting out of the pink stage.
I thought I had better create a palette of neutrals. I know there are some of you out there who love neutrals (well done they can be great). I think this one is much more interesting than some I have seen. I won’t make a quilt – or anything – from the colors, though.