Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Blue Teapot

Over the weekend, I took a still life class offered by a woman in my guild, Daniele Todaro. (You can see her work here.) The class was to do a teapot... and here's mine, so far. There's nothing sewn in this picture...So far, it's all just tacked down with glue.

I'm not a "still life" sort of person, and don't plan to make more. But I was interested in this artist's technique for translating photos into fabric art. She uses a very mechanical process, working with a photograph in Photoshop to separate colors and then translating those into color/fabric swatches as a printer would do. I was surprised at how mechanical it was, but it certainly makes working that way very do-able, if you're conversant with photo editing software.

As I said, I'm not a "still life" sort of person. And Daniele's are very still. She tends to use very muted, realistic colors...attractive in their way, but too static for my taste. I think she was taken aback by my bold blue, and she tried to steer me away from the orange background. But hey. I was there for the process, not the result...Even so, I'm rather pleased with this for one day's work.

I'll have to stitch it and then see how to crop the finished thing. I don't intend for it to just sit there floating on that big orange field, in case you were wondering.


  1. I like your orange and blue much better than her muted colors!

  2. Thank you for introducing me to Daniele's work. Over the weekend a friend was going to show me the "beauty" of using Photoshop but we ran out of time. There is a market for quilters who use Photoshop...tell Daniele to get the book written quick :)

  3. Anonymous11:21 AM

    I like the blue teapot alot, it captured my attention to what what could have been another a static "subject" and the orange makes it all more interesting presentation.

    Maybe its the rebel in me, but I like it when someone else takes an detour from common themes. I can't wait to see how you quilt it.

    Great Job!

  4. The composition in this is wonderful. You got such roundness to your teapot.

    I don't think you can crop too much off the orange, unless you crop the teapot and shadow... but foreshortening it a might will work.

  5. Waaaay better than Daniele's. That is why she told you to go home and try it in calicos!! (snicker) I love the vibrance of the complementary colors. Now, why can't you just look at an object and see this variance of color and shading and do it without photoshop? I'd be way more impressed. Sorry, my allergies are a mess today and I am in a very bad mood.

  6. You can do the color gradation thing without Photoshop, just by looking at an image or object and drawing it out yourself. But, as with many computer things, Photoshop makes it much faster and easier, and you can manipulate Photoshop to change how it identifies color separations, how many levels it sees, etc. So, the individual still has many artistic decisions to make, even in the Photoshop phase. It's an amazingly useful tool.

  7. Anonymous4:10 AM

    Those colours are GREAT and the composition looks RIGHT to me without any cropping... I can't wait to see it come to life when you quilt it!

  8. I can't imagine how "still" this would be without your wonderful vibrant colors.(Lifeless perhaps?) It looks great! Jen

  9. Do you *have* to crop it? It just begs an answer to the question - Who are you expecting? What is so huge that you have to talk about it?

    It shows *such* a pregnant moment!