It was a beautiful evening at the Preview Night for the Laguna Beach Art-a-Fair Festival. I felt gorgeous in my new dress. And the weather couldn't have been more perfect. Thank you to all of you who came and made it such a great evening.
The Laguna Art-A-Fair is open every day through September 3, 2017. Let me know if you want tickets and I'll see if I can get you some.
I love power tools. Thankfully, I have a Dad who keeps giving them to me for my birthday.
So, I needed a new display for my booth and here is what I came up with. It is a wood framework that is hinged so it folds flat. The shelves and front panel have Velcro so they can be removed and rolled up for transport. It weighs a bit more than I would like, but it is very sturdy. And, I think it shows off my plates really well.
Click on the images below to see how I made it.
Sometimes things just don’t work out the way we planned. I had all these grandiose ideas about how I was going to complete the Catalina Island piece by the end of July. I got it to a certain point and then I stalled.
I just wasn’t feeling it. I don’t know why. And, I have found that when I get to a place like this, it is best to just step back from the art. So, I rolled it up and stuffed it in a corner of my studio.
But, that doesn’t mean I have given up. I’ll get back to it eventually. For now, I am moving on to something else.
I’m calling this new one “The View from My Favorite Restaurant.” (It’s Peppino’s at Lake Mission Viejo in case you’re wondering.) I took my best friend out for dinner here when she was visiting in June. We just sat out on the patio and watched all these little sailboats going by. I think they were having a sailing class. Then it dawned on me, I should be taking pictures. Duh! I got several good ones. The one above is the one I am working from.
I am glad that so many of you were able to attend the Art-A-Fair Premier Night party. I had a great time. And I especially enjoyed telling the story of my shoes.
Hmmm, my shoes? Yes, my shoes. For those of you who did not get to hear the story, here it is…
I have been showing my work at the Art-A-Fair Festival for 20 years now. My very first year in the show I wore a gold outfit along with a pair of gold pumps. In the intervening years, my size has, um, changed. The gold outfit no longer fits. However, the shoes still do.
Here's a photo of my first Art-A-Fair Festival Opening Night 20 years agp! That's me in the center of the photo wearing the gold top.
I thought it would be rather poetic to wear the same shoes I wore 20 years ago.
Unfortunately, when I took them out of storage, I discovered that all of the gold had flaked off of the leather leaving a very sticky residue. Well, at least they still sort of fit and they were in good shape.
At this point, I decided that since I didn’t have a pair of red shoes, why not bling these out? Off I went to the local hobby stores to stock up on red rhinestones. I think I bought every bag of red rhinestones within a 20 mile radius!
A couple thousand rhinestones, a bottle of glue, and about 15 hours later here was the result…
They went perfectly with my new red dress!
While I won’t be wearing the red shoes, you can see my work and maybe even me at the Art-A-Fair Festival in Laguna Beach now through August 28.
I have been working on the new piece. After some deliberation, I decided to work on a photo I took of sailboats with Catalina in the background. The photo itself isn’t all that great. In fact, as a photograph, it’s rather boring. However, it has all of the elements that I was looking for: the sky, the water, an island, and boats.
The first step was to create the sky. I did this with my usual technique of collage with tiny pieces of various sky blue and light blue fabrics. I did the same thing to create the ocean, using darker blues. I left a gap all along the horizon line so that I could add the island with the water coming up to it. (If I just added the island on top of the water it would look odd.)
In this photo you can see where I am adding a piece of water fabric over the island. Shortly after adding in Catalina Island and finishing the stitching, I stepped back from the piece. I looked at it and wondered what to do next. I couldn’t decide.
On the one hand, I could be completely true to the original image with one larger sailboat in the foreground and many tiny ones in front of the island. But then I started thinking about how difficult it would be to add in all of those tiny boats. Even though they would not be that detailed, they would require enough detail so that you can see what they are. Otherwise they would all end up just being blobs of color.
So, the next possibility would be to have just the single sailboat in the foreground and leave the rest of the boats out. But this particular photo is on the day of the Newport-to-Ensenada boat race. There were about 200 sailboats out there that day…and that was what I was trying to capture. So, to only have the foreground boat in the image is really not where I want to go with this piece.
Well, that is where I now stand. I have not yet decided on how to complete this piece. I will keep you posted. And, given that the Art-A-Fair Festival opens in 7 days, I don’t think I’ll have it done by then.
And speaking of Art-A-Fair, for those of you who are able to go, I still have a few tickets left for the official Premier Night Party next Wednesday, June 22 in Laguna Beach, California. If you would like to go to this invitation only event, please send me an email with your name and address right away so that I can snail-mail the tickets to you. In the meantime, I have lots of things to do to get ready. Hope to see you there!
People have asked me how I create my thread paintings. This is a difficult question to answer. It depends on many things. Sometimes it needs inspiration. Sometimes I need to know that the piece that I want to do is possible with this technique. Other times I just need to sit down and start doing it.
With the summer Art-A-Fair Festival season fast approaching, I really need to create some new pieces. So, why not take you along with me on the journey.
I am currently working on pieces with an ocean theme. A friend reminded me that the Newport to Ensenada sailboat race started last Friday. It was a good excuse to go to the beach and take some reference photos.
The sailboats were too far offshore to get any really good shots, but I did get some other interesting photos. After I got home and started looking at the photos, I found a few that I liked. I narrowed this list down to the four in the image above. Now remember, these are reference photos so I can change the lighting and make things more visible, like Catalina Island in the upper right and lower left images.
Now it comes down to a decision process. Which image do I like the best? Which one would work best with my thread painting technique? Which one can I make most quickly? Do I need to go out and buy new fabrics for any of these?
There are lots of questions to be answered before I actually start on a piece. Right now I am going to let the questions simmer for a couple of days. If you have a preference for one of these photos, let me know.
In the meantime, I have to get ready for the Talmadge Art Show tomorrow (Sunday, May 1). Since many of you were asking for them, I make several of the longer scarves. I am also in the process of making a couple of music themed pillows. (They’re about halfway done right now.)
So, if you are in the San Diego area, the Talmadge Art Show is at the Liberty Station Conference Center, 2600 Laning Rd. San Diego, off of Harbor Drive and Laning. The hours are 10am to 4pm.
Hope to see you there!
Talmadge Art Show - May 1, 10am - 4pm
Liberty Station Conference Center
2600 Laning Rd. San Diego
Fiber Artist and Author, Loretta Alvarado