Since my last blog I have made much greater progress than I anticipated by this time. I have completed the basic quilting, and I am currently adding the rust colored star dust streaks that swirl through spiral galaxies. I was a little worried about this part of the quilt, because the dust swirls in complex ways throughout the overall spiral and there is no way to mark this quilt.
I am happy to say that my method seems to be working, so I thought I would share. I started the quilt by placing a NASA photo of the galaxy I am using as my model (see my last blog post) in Corel Painter and “tracing” a simple outline of the placement of the spiral arms and then moving it to Corel Draw and printing it full size. Corel Draw will tile a picture into whatever size paper your printer handles, so you can tape it together and have a full sized pattern to work with. If you have Bernina V7 design software, and don’t have Corel Draw, you can use the art canvas, which is a version of Corel Draw. I also have found that Excel spreadsheet will also tile a picture, which is what I used before I had Corel Draw.
Then I traced the pattern onto the black fabric, but that is the sum total of any kind of pattern I could use on this quilt because after the Angelina Fibers and the veiling are placed down, you can’t trace anything, and there really isn’t much more you could make a pattern for anyway.
Sew I have gotten all the fiber applique and nylon veiling completely quilted, using 40 weight black thread and rulers for the basic swirl, monopoly over the fiber applique part and black 100 weight silk over the purely black part. I also embroidered spire star backgrounds for ten stars, using in-the-hoop and gray variagated 40 wt thread.
In order to free motion stitch (is it embroidery or is it quilting?) I have printed several pictures of spiral galaxies that show the rust colored dust swirls fairly clearly. It actually looks very much like a woody vine. Anyway, I place the pictures close by or even on the quilt so I can see them frequently and out of my peripheral vision and have begun the stitching that way
This quilt is a homage to the fabulous spiral galaxies sometimes photographed or even envisioned by painters in NASA’s website. It is not supposed to be any particular spiral galaxy. I am intrigued by the realization that our own galaxy, the Milky Way, is a spiral galaxy. Here is a link that talks about that and gives us some idea of where we are in the Orion spur part of the galaxy. Milky Way link
This is the third of my deep space quilts. Now that I have developed the techniques for making pictorial deep space quilts I am planning on making more. I’m not sure how many more or which wonderful space entities I will use for the models. I hope to develop at least enough to put together an exhibit in some gallery somewhere some year. I have discovered that some space entities work better than others for my quilts. I have found that those that have more distinct characteristics, those that have more color, and those that stand a better chance of the viewers recognizing what they are looking at seem to be the best models. Maybe some of the quilts will actually earn some ribbons for me. That would be wonderful.
Sew happy everyone! I hope you can have some time to create in your studio this week.