Live creatively!

Today, I can happily say that the chaos and burden of some parts of my life have been lightened adn relaxed enough for me to pick up this blog again and share all the pretty shiney things I’ve been doing. 🙂

Over the next few weeks I will be doing two blogs a week, Tuesdays will be about a current project, and Thursdays will be one of the “throwback Thursday” styled blog postings, since I have over a year worth of art projects and commissions to share.

So, today being Thursday, I wanted to talk about a couple of important things from this past year that I will give individual attention to at some point.

dye sample cards from a weekend workshop at Mistress Willoc's

dye sample cards from a weekend workshop at Mistress Willoc’s

Lately I’ve been saying, ” I dye valiantly,” which out of context sounds funny, but I have fallen in love with dyeing. More so the chemistry, plant makeup and color theory.

It’s addicting.

We will be going over dye recipes, how to do sun-tea methods that are great for hot summer days. as well as for youth activities.

I also want to discuss the mordants and how they affect the dye stuffs, with examples from different samplings I’ve done.

One subject I’d love to keep as an ongoing project, maybe (if I’m ambitious enough a weekly additional quick post)  Is foraging.  I do a lot of foraging in my neighborhood and surrounding green spaces for items to use in my art projects. That includes dye stuffs, and class supplies. I’d love to share some simple rules about gathering from nature, responsibly.

That’ll be fun!

Me displaying the finished 15 inch wheel-thrown maiolica plate

Me displaying the finished 15 inch wheel-thrown maiolica plate

I think the most fun I have had with the SCA and artisan endeavors has been through ceramics. I take a certain gleeful joy in creating plates and bowls modeled after extant pieces.  I’ve entered several pieces in artisan competitions throughout Ansteorra. The marriage plate, and its solid documentation, earned me the right to represent Elfsea as their artisan champion. The dragon plate, “Howling at the Moon” was chosen as one of the Gulf Wars artisan entries during Ansteorra’s Kingdom Arts & Sciences competition in 2014.

I LOVE the history and social structures involved with maiolica and the creation of ceramics– guilds, taxes, petitions and rivalries. I’ll write up some of it for a social history glimpse at some point.

Each time I research a new piece of pottery, and the area it was created in. I am amazed and in awe of the artisan prowess and technologies available back then.  Absolutely floored.

SO!  Some topics of discussion for the next few weeks:  FIBER! All the squishy things, how to pick the right fiber for your project.  Treatment and care, as well as how to find good deals. BEADS! Making glass beads, engineering ceramic and paper beads, what was available in period as far as resources go, and some other cool offshoot ideas. TABLET WEAVING! Once I unearth my loom from the stacked boxes from my recent move, I will set up video and photo stills of the beginning process, and work our way up to more advanced items, like double face double turn, 3/1 broken twill, and brocading.  LOTS of fun there. 🙂 (and plenty of untangling thread moments)  EMBROIDERY  Oooh boy, I’ve taken on a couple decent projects, so those will be in the ongoings, but we will also talk about how to keep something portable, and modular ( how not to stress about the final piece, look at the little parts and work on those)

Also, my goal is to shoot more video- how to and project comparison. It will hopefully help some of you with your research and troubleshooting.

Lots of cool things on the horizon, can’t wait to share.

Much love,

-Madalena

Got any video tutorial ideas? reply to this post or contact me above and give me a few ideas. I’d love your input!

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