Monday, November 28, 2016

After Washing, a Postscript

 Thought I'd better add a follow up to my last post in case anyone wanted to try this technique. To remove the resist when the project is complete, one has to wash the fabric with warm water and mild soap. While Jacquard's Dye-na-flow held up well to the washing, the Inktense pencil work faded. 
In this detail you can see how faded the Inktense was after I washed the resist out.  The two brightly colored pear shapes have been re-touched with Inktense and heat set again, while the lighter areas haven't.  I took this photo so you could see the amount of fading the Inktense did with warm water and mild soap.
Since this will be an art piece and not a utilitarian one, that's not going to be a problem. However, if it were going onto a garment or say- a pillowcase, it could be a big disappointment after a lot of careful work. 
The fabric, resist washed out, pear areas re-colored and ready for quilting.  Which my daughter wanted to do.  That's okay by me, she'll do a beautiful job. Painting it was the main part I was interested in.  Good team, huh?

None of this has dampened my enthusiasm for the idea or materials. I'm still dying to get back after it. Or should I say "dyeing" to get back??! 

Thanks for stopping by- Alice

Friday, November 25, 2016

Using Inktense Pencils and Dye-Na-Flow on Cotton

Over, under and around Thanksgiving and all the fun with our family here, I’ve managed to find time to work on my experiment, too.  Oh boy.  I’ve found something addictive that will have to be pursued, there’s no getting away from it now.  Putting color into fabric and letting it blend and move is very cool.  If it weren’t the dreaded black Friday today, I’d be in the car headed to a town for more fabric.  It’s that fun.

 The prickly pear fruit shapes are done with Derwent's Inktense pencils, while the surrounding color is Jacquard's Dye-na-flow.  The Inktense pencils aren't as transparent, but the intense color is just what I wanted in these areas.
Since this was an experiment I figured I’d use both the Derwent Inktense watercolor pencils and the Jacquard Dye-na-flow inks in it to get a feel for how they handled.  Both worked similarly, but each had qualities that made how I used them different. 

You can see in this detail how the salt pulled the colors around and made nice special effects.  I added a deep pink over the fruit areas which made the color even deeper and richer.  Compare to the photo above.
Having a pencil to use gave me real control over where the color would go and how intensely it would be applied, but I found you have to blend like crazy to keep from leaving pencil marks with the Inktense.  The Jacquard dyes covered very evenly but are a little bit tricky if you are using more than one color in an area.   However, using salt on the dye while it’s wet gives special effects- once I added salt, the different colors blended through the patterns the salt created. 

The piece as it stands today.  After adding a few details, this will be ready for heat setting and washing out the resist.  Tomorrow!  I hope..
The colors of both mediums are vibrant and saturated, making the material really glow.  With light coming in from behind the translucent fabric they practically sing.  Although the project isn’t finished yet, I’ve gotten enough done to know that this is something I will be working at for awhile.  (thinking muslin…silk…)  I’m anxious to get the color heat-fixed and the fabric washed so I can see how the resist held up.  Just a few more bits to add…

Thanks for stopping by! Alice

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Learning Something New

At long last, a post on Whatercolorit!  The period between now and September 30, the day I last posted, feels like a lifetime… a long, drab lifetime.  I wish I could say the month and a half or so in between has been filled with amazing creativity, but alas- I cannot. For me, stress rarely leads to productive time and the past few weeks have been brutal.  ‘Nuff said. 

Here I am applying a resist, called "gutta" to the fabric which, in theory, will leave white spaces after it is washed away. I guess we'll see, huh!  

Today has been the first full, unobligated, free day I’ve had in all those weeks- a whole day at home, one that belonged just to me.  And- I didn’t know what to do with myself.  Of all the things I’ve been aching to do, I couldn’t choose something to work on!  I’ve flitted around here most of this day trying to apply myself to a project. 
The resist all applied and drying.  Now I just have to decide whether I'm going to use Inktense water-soluble pencils or Jaquard's Dye-na-flow fabric paints.  Both should work like watercolor paint.  Part of the fun will be pondering on the choice while I drift off to sleep!  

Finally, I grabbed a pencil and the stretched fabric I’ve been fretting over and just drew out a design.  I’ve had such a desire to try something totally new.  Days ago I stretched a piece of an old cotton bed sheet over a wooden frame so that I’d be ready when the moment came.  This project is a total experiment.  No pressure to make a masterpiece, just a chance to see what can be done.  I can’t describe how much better I feel tonight.  Like a dam has cracked and let a little bit of water through to give my roots some relief.  So much relief that some of that water is leaking right out of my eyes!

Thanks for stopping by- Alice