Sunday, June 30, 2013

"if i only knew"- 6" by 6" Challenge

When I read that (in the July/August issue) Cloth, Paper, Scissor magazine had put out a reader's challenge, "Mixed-Media Stitched Square," I thought it would make a perfect challenge for heARTist Trading Cards. I kept it simple for our group. Anyone taking up the challenge only needs to create a 6" x 6" mixed media piece that includes stitching. Well in my book, the person issuing the challenge does not sit back and watch everyone create so I jumped in.

I decided to create in a way that I had not tried. I started with duck cloth, cut into three pieces and sewn back together. I covered the entire piece with matte medium and white paint. After it dried, I added Golden fluid acrylics. Once it dried, I added a vintage piece of black and white fabric which I also painted. The photograph is of my father's legal guardian's wife, Rachel, from 1919, which I discovered years after she died. While Rachel shared many things about her past, she never shared this period which is why I titled the piece "if i only knew." I wonder what parts of my past will be "discovered" after I am gone.  The photograph was a toner copy applied using matte medium then a glaze added. It was much too harsh as a black and white image. The postage stamp is from an envelop addressed to her husband, Robert, and bearing the cancellation date of "1929." It seemed fitting to include it. I also added a piece of vintage ribbon and black beads. I also used a piece of sequin waste, a make up sponge and a stamp pad to add some additional texture to the background. Sticking a fork in it and calling it done!   I'm happy! Never having worked in this size, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it and the process.  I plan to make several 6" by 6" pieces. Not sure if one will be entered in the challenge, but I do love exploring small art and sharing it with the wonderful group of artists that make up heARTist Trading Cards.

My Off the Wall Friday participation.


  1. Elegantly simple,but beautiful. Nice story behind it too.

  2. Lovely piece, Karen! And I agree, wonderful story.

  3. oooh how interesting both in technique and content
    Lee Anna Paylor

  4. Love the story and the piece you created- it has an air of mystery about it.


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