About Me

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Great Falls, Montana, United States
I love creating art. I love the Creator! And through that love, I find a little slice of heaven on earth and I give Him all the glory! It's a great adventure and I'm excited to see what's around the bend! Come join me, won't you?
Showing posts with label Give-A-Way. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Give-A-Way. Show all posts

Thursday, March 12, 2015

izaak ~ rocky mountain bighorn sheep ~ {giveaway too}

happy friday ~

meet izaak.  the rocky mountain bighorn sheep.  big and bloomin' he is!  that's because he's laying in a mountain meadow, enjoying the lush green grass of summer time livin' ya know.  

i came up with the name because a reader {thank you vickie} reminded me of a bible story; abraham, his son isaac, and the ram.  also, in glacier park, we have a classic old inn, named the izaak walton inn.  so there... lies the story of how he is named.  i loved the others, too.  "rosy ram," "ram-beau" and "bloomin' bighorn" were among my other favorites!  {you guys are so cool!}

so he went from this: 
 to this:  
and other changes.  most of them subtle, but some not as much. the biggest one was the horn color contrast of the horns.  if i had more blue flowers i would have reversed their roles, and made the blue horns come out of the blue head.  {sounds kinda funny doesn't it}  because pink is what i have the most of, that's the choice i made for the larger areas of the horns.  the blue tips... well, i wish they showed better against the background, but i may finish them with a bit of dark thread around the edges to separate the imagery better. i could have used a different background fabric... but i wanted to use this one. {made by vicki welsh of course}. this is her thrive gradient. it's beautiful isn't it.  big blue skies... lush meadows... perfect!

notice too, that i covered up the large blue flower in his forehead?  i found it distracted from the face and eyes.  so i covered it with another blue flower, taking out the most graphic 'eye-catching' of the first blue flower.

and i changed the eyes.  i cut out some of those multi-petaled black flowers.  i like them on the side better. and i also angled them ever so slightly, as well as added thread play in a small rectangle in the eye's center.  

i also added bits of the darker blue millifiori flower circles to the face to {hopefully} emphasize curvature of the head, and shadow illusions. these are the same ones added into the horn structure, and the totality of their use brings a bit of cohesiveness to the whole design.  {i also added them into the foreground flowers, that's he laying in}.  
and i cut the nose ~ the brown part {the shadow} down slightly, too.  i like the lines i quilted into the nose area, emulating some of the curvature of his nose.  
 notice the pink flowers just above the white nose section?  to me, they speak to fur, and texture, but also to separation of the major face features of the sheep, defining and setting apart the white nose:

i added a hint of white butt on him, too.  even though he's laying down...and one may not see it clearly, i decided that's just part of my creative decision making!

 here are some of the details of the flowers that are in the foreground.

and these are the color choices and thread types i chose to quilt mr. izaak.  by far, magnifico {by superior threads}, which is 100% polyester, 40 wt thread, is the easiest to quilt with. no fraying, smooth quilting, and it has no trouble going through all the thick layers of fabric and fusible.  at times... there are probably 7-8 layers of all of those, including batting and backing!

i also used masterpiece {the gray} 100% cotton, 50 wt in the bottom.  i used the blue magnifico in the blue part of horns, the same for the pink, and brown for the body, as well as white for the nose, etc.  and a must have, is superior's titanium coated, 90/14 topstitch needle.  it's certainly my dream team!  i've used several other types of thread now in my collages, and by far, there is no comparison as to ease in quilting.
 after much debate in my mind, i decided on a curvy two sided cut for the outer edge.  i'm ready now to make some modifications to my initial pattern, get it printed, photographed, and ready for packaging.  it will be listed in my etsy shop, soon!  

if you like mr. izaak ~ and would like to try making one from my pattern... just leave a shout out on this post.  when i get the pattern printed up {hopefully by next week  i'll send the pattern to a lucky reader, free!   i'll pick the winner next friday, march 20th. 

also, i've been asked quite a lot for a pattern for the table runners, mug rugs, toppers... so i will be developing that more completely, as well.  wahoo!  and i'll be announcing the facebook winner of the "rocky" pattern, next monday!  

another fun and full weekend of collage class coming up!  i'm ready!!!

thanks for following along my process... my craziness for collage!!  

...bobcat, anyone?  

soli deo gloria!

Monday, March 9, 2015

a spring giveaway ~ link-up and.. sneak peek!

morning glories!

it's feeling more... and more like spring!  yay!  in celebration of those warmer days and sunshine goodness, i'm giving away my new pattern to one lucky winner: "rocky ~ the rocky mountain goat."  to enter the giveaway, you will have to "like" my facebook page {if you've not done so previously}, "MarveLes Art Studios" and leave a comment on the facebook post when i post the link today.  {and ya just never know what else i might add to the party giveaway} AND if you share the fb post... comment again, saying you did so for another chance!  so please... stay tuned, won't you?  and thank you so much!
and i' also linking up with my friend vicki welsh's giveaway {hand dyed fabric anyone?!!}  she's doing a little spring cleaning, and i think it will be well worth a few minutes of time to go check it out!

in the meantime, i've been faithfully fusing, cutting, and preparing fabrics for my newest collage... and i'll be adding a few of my favorite flowers to my giveaway package, too.

here are a few {more} of my tips for cutting floral motifs:
-- cut leaves with your flowers, and group them together.  they can always be cut off later if it works better in the collage.
-- those little tendrils of leaves and dots, are great textural shapes to add a bit of natural organic lines, and sparkly movement in a piece!
 -- i like to cut a bit of a tiny smidgen of a border around some of my shapes... especially if they aren't defined by an outside line/color of some kind:
-- i have learned through this series of working in collage, how smart it is to have a bowl, or some other receptacle to put your cutting scraps into.  it can be so messy!  so keeping it to a "dull roar" is vital to my need to keep the clutter a bit more manageable as i sit and cut.
 and as i've said before, i group the shapes by size and color as i cut so i can keep track of them, and store them easily:
-- i also put them away in the same manner.  smaller flowers are put into smaller baggies, within the same large baggie as the same color way.  and because i've cut a lot... this also helps me find my shapes, and keep my sanity!
 -- as to cutting.  cut what you think you need... and double it! that would be variety + shape + size!
 i encourage everyone who is interested in this technique to do this:
-- choose a color theme, keeping it to three colors.  
-- then choose from those three colors, values in light, medium and dark values for each of those colors
-- the same thing for large, medium and small shapes, in each of those values.
-- don't forget how dark and light {black and white} can add much needed punch, as well as a place for the "eye to rest" within the collage.  they are already very busy, so some "quiet time" in the design is essential {i think}.

at least i'm trying to learn that concept!
 -- pick shapes that are lined, solid, tiny print... and vary the shape, from round to oval, multi-petaled, teardrop, squarish... they all add a wonderful variety and texture to collage work!

 and so all of those shapes seen above, their color, value... light and dark of each, are part of the overall design theme  for my newest collage of a rocky mountain bighorn sheep,  from my initial sketch, which is the basis of the imagery for the overall design:
his color theme is brown, blue, and pink.  therefore, i'm playing with shades of brown, blues and pinks, going lighter and darker within those colors, and also choosing a variety of size in shapes in each of those themes, too.

as well as a terrific background base of hand dyed fabric from miss vicki welsh!
i'm working through some nuances of my pattern writing, and hope to have him published in a week or so after i change things up a bit!  it's time for him to go up on a design wall, and for me to step back... always a good thing.

i need to tweak the nose a bit more, and those horns are going to be a challenge, for sure... and the eyes too.  but i am thinking big and bold for the horns... we shall see!

i'm excited to see how that may turn out... so what do you think of him so far?

i'm needing some inspiration for a name, too... anyone have any suggestions?!

i'm so glad you stopped in ~ thanks for visiting!
soli deo gloria

Saturday, February 14, 2015

be mine collage ~ happy valentine's day! {and winner!}

hi there all you valentines!  

here's another idea for collage, in case you end up with a few leftover motifs?! {you betcha!}   and this charming little heart is perfect for today's valentine theme!  happy valentine's day! 

thank you so very much for entering the giveaway, taking time to spend a few minutes here, and checking out the goods!

well, sir brian is out working unexpectedly today, so i had to use the random generator. it's always more fun when i ask him to pick a number between 1-72... but here we go anyway!

True Random Number Generator  14Powered by RANDOM.ORG

elle... you are the sweet valentine winner
of a yard of your choice 
and misty fuse, fusible web!  
congratulations my friend.
{vicki will contact you}

soli deo gloria!

Monday, February 9, 2015

a spring fling with collage ~ and a giveaway!

the lawns are greening up, the winter wheat is up a couple inches and bright green in the balmy february weather we've been enjoying here in central montana!

so why not celebrate a bit of that in a collage technique, presenting a beautiful spring table runner?  yes!  easy.  and guaranteed to brighten your day! 

and today is the announcement of a prize package giveaway from the fabulously talented hands of vicki welsh.  she's giving away a yard {squeal!} of her gorgeous hand dyed fabric, of your choice and... 2 1/2 yards of misty fuse, a spidery-light, almost invisible fusible web.  how sweet is that?  {misty fuse fusible doesn't change the hand of the fabric.}  i wrote about it in a post "just the facts on fusible" if you want to see what it looks like on fabrics.
 my collaged table runner began with inspiration from vicki's hand dyed fabric; here's the link:  red-purple gradient that is just so yummy, you almost want to take a bite out of it!  

did you know vicki welsh does custom orders, too?! you can't go wrong with a "stash pack" -- a lovely pack of five pieces of hand dyed 100% cotton mercerized fabric.  the stash pack is a total of 1.25 yards of glorious  graduations within the same color theme; a great way  to begin, and awesome for piecing, too.

vicki follows a meticulous process of washing out the dye to eliminate bleeding.  the fabrics are so well done, and the colors are really fabulous.  it's on my hit list to get my hands on every one of them!!!  lol 
 this is how i quilted it. in the perimeter on top of all the collaged floral motifs, i chose to free motion with the yli fusions thread, a 24 weight thread with a 100/16 needle.  love the chunky texture, and it's always interesting how the thread ties and unites the flowers together, too.  i try to catch as many raw edges as i quilt, too.  even though the edges are glued down with steam-a-seam 2 {the lite version} and completely washable, it's just a good idea, overall.  i don't fuss about it too much, really.  this will be totally washable, too. i always like to dry them flat, and then press from the backside first, then on the front as needed.

i chose a magnifico solid, polyester, 40 wt thread for the quilting in the red-purple gradient fabric center.  i just wanted it to pop with a little dimension, and i love how it contrasts with the busyness of the flowers, but ties it all in, too.
 here is the backside... a batik is the fabric i chose, and i really do like the contrast of the white on it.  it also makes this beauty reversible. i used superior's masterpiece cotton in a white color for the bobbin thread with both of the top thread types i quilted with.
 i have some pretty silk flowers {wish they were fresh} and even they look quite charming on this spring runner:
the curvy edge is really nice on this floral design, too. i didn't measure at all;  it's randomly cut as a continuous smooth curve along the edges with my rotary cutter, and then bound with a bias binding.
my favorite detail is the small dark purple flowers that are silhouetted into the solid hand dyed fabric... i was glad to find it was so worth it {to me} to cut out these delicate darlings!

this runner is now hanging up at the quilt-a-way shop here in great falls.  the first collage class is full, and we've got quite a few students signed up for the second one, which is set for saturday and sunday, march 14th and 15th!  you can also create this runner instead of an animal if you would like.  
leave a comment here today, to be entered for the drawing. one per person.   brian will draw us a winner and i will announce it this coming saturday, february 13th.  i think that is a real fun way to begin a valentine's celebration!

a big thank you to vicki for sponsoring this giveaway!  

blessings on your day, and happy valentine's day, too!

soli deo gloria

Monday, November 3, 2014

winners of vicki welsh's navajo hand dyed fabric ~

morning glories!

yes... you read that title right {i hope} and i am giving away TWO  pieces of vicki's delicious fabric in the navajo gradient! 

and... vicki and i are teaming up for another giveaway later this month, so please be sure to check it out... ya just never know what might happen!

thank you for all the sweet and kind comments, i really do appreciate the precious time you all spend coming to the blog and reading what i've been "up to!" 

and i have been spending lots of time quilting, preparing some of my things for entry into a christmas craft show locally, and re-filling the etsy store, too... and finally took some time to take photos yesterday.  

so, let's move on into a new piece i've quilted, using the navajo gradient from vicki, this time i went to my free motion couching foot, and yes... more feathers!
 feathers ~ feathers ~ there is so much to explore in feather motifs, that's for sure!  and i'm going to be practicing them lots more, varying my styles, and seeing if i can push myself beyond my comfort zone, and into some new variations, and technique improvement overall.
 this gradient has such beautiful changes in intensity of color! {as all of them do}, but i never tire of  how the quilting, the thread choices, and overall color of those factors affect the visual complexity of this piece.  
 and the feather motif in the background was accomplished using "twist" by superior threads.  i love the powerful impact of these two colors, twisted together on one spool, and i've started experimenting more with them!  after couching the feathers with a prety yarn, i outlined them with razzle dazzle, from the bobbin {known as bobbin play} and then began the overall quilting surrounding the feathers:

not a really great backdrop, are our front steps, but it was better than the indoor lighting i had available yesterday!

and two of you will receive a quarter yard of this beauty, with all the range of color just as you see it in the picture below.

  what a great backdrop 
for just about anything you want to do with it!
soli deo gloria!
the winners:
"quilting tangent" and "cinderbike"  
please contact me so i can send 
you this gorgeous gradient right away!
leslievaskey at msn dot com. 
if i don't hear in a week, i'll draw new winners.
thanks again everyone!!!
blessings on your day.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

autumn paisley ~ a stenciled, quilted runner ~ giveaway

hello everyone ~
i've been happily ensconced, practicing a basic feather, warming up for more! 

the piece below is a large, runner-sized piece of hand dyed gradient from vicki welsh.  it's called "navajo" and i love this color way .. perfect for our autumn holiday, and i thin this piece is a great beginning to setting a dining table for thanksgiving, and beyond!

now let me say a word about hand dyed fabrics. 
compared to the current cost of batiks, now about $13.00 to $13.50 a yard; a hand dyed fabric is priced at $18 a yard.  i'd say that's quite a great price especially when you consider the hours involved, the care in ensuring they are colorfast, and of course, by buying you are supporting an artist, who very much depends and relies on our support to continue investing and producing beautiful products.  
vicki is truly an ARTIST in my book!  
she's a true craftsman, like many are, but i cannot tell you how much i enjoy going to what i now call, "my vicki stash" of hand dyed, custom created, beauties!!

and that is what i did ... therefore, enter into the scene of "autumn paisley!"
now this is not exactly new to me.  in an earlier piece with the same gradient base fabric, i created a poppy art quilt, and i loved that overall look so much, i decided to stencil {with a sweet Rebecca Baer paisley stencil}, using my paintstiks, to create a much larger piece. 

autumn paisley is also listed in my etsy store

needless to say, i had a great time!  
{in case i forget to tell ya!}

do you love hand dyed fabric?
have you ever purchased any?
would you like to win some? 
if so...

i am giving a piece of it away ~ 1/4 yard of this beautiful navajo gradient created by the fabulous hands of vicki.
yes, i really am. 

just leave me a comment ... anything you'd like.
i'd love to hear from you!
and if you'd like, go visit vicki's etsy store.  you can view the gradients i drool over, right here!
winner announced next Monday, November 3rd.
blessings on your day!
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