Monday, June 11, 2012

Rust Dye plus Stitching plus Encaustic

I have a fascination with the shapes and textures I see in rural barns and outbuildings. While planning  a fabric piece called  "Mended Barns" (more about this in another post) I started researching how I might capture the distinctive rusty patterns that develop in steel roofs and siding. There are numerous online resources on rust dyeing, but I found Kimberley Baxter Packwood's website and e-book most informative.

The move from rail to road transportation has meant the demise of the railroad. Many have been converted to walking and biking trails. Over the years I've walked a rail trail near my home, every time finding some rusted treasure: bolts and spikes and all kinds of metal objects that held the rail lines together. I have a big bucket of lovely rusty objects. I must have known that I'd find a use for them one day.

Canyon Study, 2009
My first experiments didn't generate anything that I'd use with "Mended Barns" but my results brought another one of my recurring themes to mind: petroglyphs, pictographs and ancient places of power. Here are two of my 2009 collagraph prints made after a memorable trip to the Grand Canyon:

Shamans' Gallery, 2009

And here are the first rust dyed, stitched and encaustic pieces:

Rust dyed cotton muslin

"Cedar Breaks"
Hand stitched and encaustic on hardboard substrate

Rust dyed cotton muslin, partially stitched

"Spirit Boat"
Hand stitched and encaustic on hardboard substrate

This may be the start of a series!

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