Gharials are my favorite crocodilians. I suppose if you look at the thresher shark's giant tail and the gharial's super-long snout, I dunno, maybe I have a favorite animal type.
This is a 4x6" freehand threadpainting stitched while glancing at an image from Astronomy Picture of the Day I left up on my computer screen. Lots of thread, cotton duck, Peltex. There's a bit of watercolor on paper to back it in its vintage frame.
The thresher shark is my favorite shark. I remember leafing through my Poppop's copy of The Lore of Sportfishing, looking at all the illustrations of different species of fish, and loving the thresher shark most of all for its large eyes and ultra-long tail.
I've been combing through my mental animal inventory to think of creatures that fit nicely on an elongated rectangle, and the shark seemed appropriate.
Fourth painted scarf: anglerfish. The metallic ink came in handy here for the lures. And the teeth, but that's harder to see in the photos.
I think a lot about the Aesop’s fables sour grapes fox, like, “yeah those grapes are probably sour anyway,” he walks away saying dismissively, but obsesses over them in his head afterward, has dreams about them, those unobtainable grapes and that rotten crow, and slowly his life becomes all about devouring grapes and seeking revenge against the crow.. Basically it’s like a supervillain origin story. I keep drawing the fox, wetly licking his chops as he dreams about roast crow stuffed with grapes.
I thought it would be fun to paint it on a scarf in some way. Originally I had planned on putting the grapes in the center with the crow and fox at either end. Then when I started painting I just forgot? and put the grapes and crow on one end, with the fox on the other. Now when the scarf is worn, the grapes are upside-down. But it doesn't look even half as weird as I thought it would.
For my second try with the Tsukineko ink, I wanted to do something big, with colors bleeding together, and then go back and fill in the details with a dry brush. (If you get anything from looking at the images I make, it's that a. I like to draw animals and b. I like heavy outlines.) So I decided to make a squid that ran the full length of the scarf.
I've been doing a lot of direct application dyeing with thickened fiber reactive dyes, especially since I bought a set of stretcher bars. Silk painting with paints and inks has always interested me, but I never received instruction on it and didn't want to sink money into products I might end up not liking.
In early March, I went to the NJ Quilt Fest with Mom and Grammom. My mom and I used to drive down to Hampton, Virginia to meet Grammom for the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Fest - she lives in North Carolina and would come to the Hampton show with her quilt guild. I think her guild stopped going? We didn't go at all for a couple years, and this year we decided to go to the one up here while she was visiting.
In the vendor section of the show, I finally got to see some product demos and was convinced! I bought a kit of Tsukineko all-purpose inks for painting on scarves. I've always done little pieces on paper with India ink and acrylic inks, as well as watercolor and gouache, and it turns out painting with the Tsukinekos is very similar. I'm doing different experiments to work out the effects of layering colors with and without heat setting, how much water to use to get a wash or a good bleed, etc.
The very first scarf was pink whales.
From the end of February. Machine embroidery and gouache. This one even got a frame!