Wednesday, April 13, 2022

New Work: Ragged Series

Back in January I began a new series of small stitched works which I am calling my 'Ragged Series'...

Ragged no. 2

In this series I continue to draw my inspiration from my local rural surroundings of Lancaster County, PA. Along with my usual interest in line and shape, I am also playing with texture and taking a wondrous deep dive into exploring the very wide range of local colors, including colors found in the farm fields and old barns, (of course!) to roadside farm produce and flower stands, to the lovely colors of Amish clothing, and old painted farm tractors... It's all fair game, and glorious to me!

Above is an example of how what I see is influencing me. On the right is one of my photos of a local road with old worn barns, and on the left is one of my 'Ragged' pieces. 

To achieve the colors and textures I am looking for, I begin with ripping and tearing bits of assorted fabrics of various weave and fiber content. 

I then individually hand paint each individual piece with different fabric paints and inks. 

The ones shown above were done with a combination of Jacquard and Setacolor paints 
and Tsukineko inks.

Ragged no. 6

Here's another example of local inspiration. Please note however, I don't reference any photos while I work, as I think it would hang me up with trying to get my brain to create more literally. Wishing to keep things abstract, I rely on trusting that I intuitively know these colors, and the rural "feel" I wish to communicate, from a long time of observation and study. I admit to being both surprised and tickled when afterwards I can go back and find photos that connect with what I've stitched. It further reinforces my faith in trusting my gut.

Ragged no. 7

(Inspired by old red barns and the shadows that hide in the corners.)

Ragged no. 8

To date I have completed 14 works in this series and am currently working on numbers 15 and 16. Generally, I tend to work in small series, rarely more than 15 pieces, often less, before moving onto a new subject, as I get so damned bored so easily. It is my true desire however to keep exploring this series at least through 2022. So far, so good... I'm still curious and interested!

I think that interest and curiosity in large part is due to how much I am enjoying the process of painting my own fabric. Above I'm playing with colors and patinas found on some of the old barns, including the wood, the roofs, the shadows... so much beautiful, subtle colors.

Below are a few more pieces from the series along with a couple of examples of local inspiration...

Ragged no. 11

Ragged no. 14

Ragged no. 13

Ragged no. 13 is my only square piece to date, but one of my favorites. 
When making this I was thinking about old red barns and farm fields.


So, that's what I'm up to these days. 
If interested, you can follow me on Instagram where I post each completed piece once listed in my Etsy shop. (To date, as I am writing this post, all but 2 of the 14 have sold, and I hope to list more soon.) 



Els said...

WOW I'm impressed by these "simple" but gorgeous pieces : LOVE them !

CJ said...

The earthly colour!!!!

Julierose said...

All lovely works--I think No. 6 is my favorite--but hard to choose as they are all so lovely hugs, Julierose

Liz A said...

I recently decided that "cloth assemblage artist" is a good way of describing what many of us do ... the cloth in this post is the epitome of that

the pairings of cloth and photographs are wonderful and I love that they were put together after each piece was assembled ...

your bits of painted cloth are likewise intriguing ... how the color wicks into the torn edges ... and now I'm wondering if you are also painting the threads ...

kay said...

This is a superbly written and beautifully photographed account of your creative process! I'll come back to this again and again for inspiration.

Angie said...

These are just amazing!

Victoria said...

Thanks so much to each of you, for the kind words. Most deeply appreciated. ❤️

Liz A, I love that description, thank you so much for sharing. I hope it's a term that catches on as it is so much better than "textile collage", which I have been falling back on. xo (And no, I don't paint my threads, although others have thought the same. I'm using Sulky cotton threads.)

Lynda Heines said...

OMG! I love these! I'm a dyer but you've got me to thinking about getting all my paints out. Lovely colors and designs. You have really inspired me today; some inspiration I have really needed. Thanks!

Glorianne said...

Gorgeous creations. SO IMPRESSED! Love their feel...every bit of it. Just love ragged bits, and yours are elevated, with purpose and heart! Beautiful!

Jan said...

I love everything about these pieces. I've done similar paint/dyeing of fabrics but my bits come out very differently, the sewn bits I mean. But still you inspire me very much, keep it up! Thanks for sharing all this, I love seeing your process.

Unknown said...

OMG these are FAB! I love your process and really love where you draw your inspiration from!

Victoria said...

Thanks so much to each of you for your kind words and enthusiastic feedback! Much appreciated!

WesternWilson said...