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Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Nothing Succeeds As Planned...


...according to Joseph Heller, the American writer, and boy, is he right! If you woke in the night, or were startled in the daytime (depending on where you were at 11am GMT) by a shriek that included a fair bit of foul language...it was me! I admit it!

You see, I thought, nah, not batik, not today...instead I'll go paint on some nearly complete textile pieces... so off I went. To get my hand in, I started on a small piece, used some gutta to strengthen the outlines of the image, put it aside to dry. Then I picked up the main piece I wanted to work on, put it on the table, decided on Quinacridone Violet and a tiny brush to do some outlining, picked up the (large) bottle, and squeezed... yes, you can picture it now. Off flew the lid, out flew the paint...much of it into the mixing bowl I had out for it, but not an insignificant amount onto my piece...and the piece I'd just finished...and some lutradur that I'd put out to experiment with.... Gnyarf. So, what did I do, I hear you holler? Well, I took the main piece downstairs, stuck it in the bath and poured a lot of cold water on it. That worked nicely. So now I have a piece drying in the bath, given that it's backed by wool, I truly hope that it doesn't shrink... I'm sure it won't, but given my luck today...

Then I went back upstairs and looked at the little piece...and thought...okay. It needed a little something, now it has it. I can't wash the paint off, because the gutta is still wet. So, what to do? The violet paint looked quite nice on the piece, so I thought...mmm...blotted off the big blobs with kitchen roll, and then distributed the excess around the design, blurring the gutta lines as I did so. It looks okay...so I put that down to dry. I suspect I'll need to add another colour to that, just to make it look intentional...you know, that well known phrase 'design feature', aka, that wasn't quite what I had in mind, but hey, it works!

Then, I put as much of the excess paint as I could, back into the bottle. And went on to do some lettering on another quilt, with gold paint. And finally ended up thinking, what do I do with all the remaining paint....so painted the lutradur, and made some monoprints on tissue paper, which will, eventually, be fused to cloth and stitched into. So all was not lost.

Sadly, this isn't the first time I've done such a thing. The last time I did it, though, I was at a workshop. I was sitting, minding my own business, doing collage work opposite a woman with a very nice sweater on (just as well, it was a cold day), when I tried to squeeze some glue out of the tube I wanted to use. Nothing happened. So I tried again. Nope. Then I tried clearing the nozzle...nope...again...and you know what's coming, don't you? Off flew the lid, followed by a stream of white glue...which landed on the woman opposite, and her nice sweater, not to mention her work... Oh, she said. I knew I shouldn't have worn a designer sweater to a workshop like this. At which, to my eternal shame, I started to laugh...and couldn't stop. That made her even less happy than she was. I immediately offered to have the sweater cleaned, or replaced, No, No, she said. It'll be fine. By this time, the other people at the workshop had stopped gasping and gaping, and moved on to giggling, discretely. I swear I'll never forget the moment it actually happened. That glue flew in slow motion towards the woman, and there was nothing I could do about it. If that's the speed that my life will flash in front of my eyes, it may take me a long time to expire!!

But I digress. I finally phoned my friend Sally. Guess what I did? says I. When I told her, she laughed in a heartfelt manner. That would be because I did the same to her over exactly the same situation (except her paint was blue) just before Christmas. What are the chances of both of us doing the same thing within a matter of weeks? Clearly, quite high.

I'll put up photos of the offending pieces when they're not dripping! Meantime,

you can contemplate 'Shapeshifter 2', in its current state on my worktable, made from lutradur fused onto patterned cloth, dyed and stitched into. I'm currently moving between, it's finished, and, no, it needs a little something... Sigh.

2 comments:

Terri said...

VBG...oh dear. Thought these things only happened to me. :o) Looking forward to seeing this 'accidental' art.

sally said...

Well of course, it happened to you because you laughed when it happened to me (grin).
Sally