I am still wanting to get better at portraits and want to find the method that I enjoy the most. So far, I have used the 4 or 5 value method that Phyllis Cullen teaches and it is very successful. I used the lightweight fusible web, Misty Fuse to create them. Here is the first one I did of my son, Adam.
|4 value portrait|
After doing a few of them I tried a collage method using Steam a Seam fusible web as the backing and tulle over the top to control all the fabrics for quilting.
The cat collage was fun to make but all those layers of fabric plus the heavier fusible web made the quilting less enjoyable.
Then, I remembered that Susan Carlson uses a collage method using glue and no fusible web at all. She says that the quilt remains really soft and easy to quilt.
I had actually cut up some fabrics to try the method out many months ago and had never got around to trying it out. At the end of last week I came down with a cold courtesy of my grandchildren. I didn't feel as if I could do anything taxing or creative. I found the fabrics over the weekend and got started on a spiral design.
I drew a very rough spiral on some white fabric and started placing the fabrics.
When the spiral was done, I used blue fabrics for the background.
Finally, I had the spiral finished, it only took an afternoon.
It was a fun and easy thing to do, a perfect project when you are not well. Susan Carlson recommends gluing down the edges with Aleene's tacky glue and I had even bought a bottle of it a while ago.
Putting glue on all the edges is where the fun stopped for me, it was really tedious. I didn't do a very good job really, luckily I have a lot of experience with machine quilting and managed to quilt spirals without lifting the edges.
Here is the spiral quilted.
I used batik fabrics because they are tightly woven and the edges don't fray very much. I remembered why I love batik fabrics, I love the texture and the little bits of other colours in them. Although I made the spiral in yellow and orange fabrics, there are little bits of blue, pink and green that makes it livelier.
I don't think gluing fabrics down is going to be in my future, even if it is a lovely soft effect.
So, I have decided that my next portrait will be a collage method but with Misty fuse behind the fabrics and I will try hard to keep the layers to a minimum. The test will be how I enjoy quilting it.
Now I just have to find a photo to use. I will wait until I am over this cold though!
Bye for now,