Tuesday, January 26, 2016

DEVO doll shakes his fist at Portland Demolition

My friend Michael told me about his latest art project. Not giving too much away but apparently Devo Doll is paying a visit to demo sites around Portland and waving his fist at them.
He sent me one of his photos and I made this from it. Messed up terribly on the perspective but it made me laugh a lot while sewing it out.

On this one I painted it first and then sewed over it.

It's hard to watch parts of Portland being torn down. I get the Ivy Island people in St. Johns (although I think it silly for them to fight for a piece of concrete.) I wish they'd save these trees instead.
They are being torn down on a house on a hill with the most amazing view of the St. John's bridge. It is a sad story of what happened to this property. Apparently they split it up in a most awkward way to build something right up next to it (to make mo $.) To do so they have to rip down two beautiful old trees. My guess is they could have kept that lot intact and beautiful...and made a lot more $.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

oh DiGiorno Pizza Present

Just off to meet a dear friend who was also a long term (5 years!) employee at Baby Wit, when Baby Wit could actually afford to pay people. The last time we hung out we TWO drank bottles of wine till 3 in the morning. And then we were starving. She said "Let's go grab a pizza from 7-11." I thought she was crazy. I turned up my nose at her frozen DiGiorno Pizza. But, when that pizza came out of the oven I scarfed down 3 pieces and was wanting more.

Made her this quick gift as a thank you. Had to post it. Super fun to make.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Man and Dog or Eye in the Sky

Another experiment with trying to find the balance between thread and paint. This is definitely not what I am going for but it's still kind of groovy.

It was fun to make. My partner played Television while I did the background.

Spider Woman

I've been experimenting with ways to do the paint on my embroidery and decided to try a fold-over background. Stupidly I used stabilizer which was great for the paint but immediately fell apart when I started sewing on it. I thought I'd post my unfinished spider face anyway.

I really like the idea of a random background and then searching out the story with thread.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Women Bathing Free Motion Embroidery and Painting

It's true, life is just better after a good soak. I've always loved images of women taking baths and I found a couple of images on the Internet that I loosely based these pieces on.

I had not quite learned how to properly adjust the tension on my bobbin in my weird Kenmore (so old Montevilla had a difficult time finding an electrical cord that fit) sewing machine so it took me FOREVER to write out Sylvia Plath's quote. Turns out there is a tiny screw on the bobbin holder that you cannot see until you pull it out. It kept jamming and was so frustrating that it required me to run myself a bath after I finished.

I painted this piece after I finished sewing out the image.
I framed it in a sparkly blue glitter frame I found at Freddy's and gifted it to my dear friend Kelley. who really needs more baths in her life.

This piece I painted before I sewed it out. I painted it onto a piece of Pellon so the texture is a bit odd. I based the image from a photo on the Internet and sewed the image just sort of going where the machine led me. At the last minute I decided to have her holding a heart. The back is a little weak and I'd rework that part if I sew it out again.

I ended up adding some words to it and also framing it in a sparkly blue frame. The words say "I washed myself clean with my heart." Although these pieces are not depictions of Portland, I did give this one to someone in Portland. And, I stitched it while in Portland. I wonder if that still fits with the theme.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Old Town Chinatown Free Motion Embroidery Painting

I love the Chinatown Gate in downtown Portland but for me, the Hung Far Low sign has always signaled that I'm here. I miss the Chinatowns of SF and Oakland and our Portland Old Town Chinatown feels a bit like a token representation of our Chinese community and apparently much of it has relocated to 82nd Ave. I've never eaten at Hung Far Low but the sign has been revitalized and it has been kept in tact for all of us to enjoy.

I photographed this vantage point of Old Town Chinatown last month making the lamp post a key element. With this piece I sewed it out first and then painted in the lines. I prefer painting first but I wanted to see what it looked like. It's pretty cool but felt a bit like color in the lines after sewing.

Old Town Chinatown Portland No Color

Old Town Chinatown Portland Painted

I also made a graphic out of this design for the Portland In Stitches t-shirt collection.

You Can Purchase This Old Town Chinatown T-shirt Here

Monday, January 11, 2016

N Going Bikeway

I go jogging all the time over this crazy Pedestrian Overpass called the N. Going Bikeway. It runs over Going Street before Swan Island. I run down Concord and hit this twisting concrete structure that opens up into a whale of a ribcage. There is a bizarre collection of locks, lots of locks, hanging from the top of the cage. There is also a tiny patch of grass that they've named Pittman Addition HydroPark with a couple of metal sculptures in it. I might have to eventually sew those out too.

With this piece I painted it first and then sewed it out. I like this process better because it feels more natural and less like painting inside the lines.

Cage of Locks