Friday, 11 January 2013

"Walk a Mile in His Shoes"

This piece is sold
Walk a Mile in His Shoes

Size: about 13”x15”

This piece started with some textured trees that I did in a Susan Paynter workshop. Once again I’m using up pieces that have been unfinished. When I saw the trees trunks, and then looked at the themes the idea of old work boots popped into my head. The rust dyed fabric was also in the corner of my eye (Hey, it comes from leaving things lying around!). My brother has been in the logging industry since he started as a chokerman at age 16, during summer holidays. Now he works as a heavy duty mechanic/  He commutes daily and works the night shift when the machines are back in the yard after the working day. He often has to drive out at night in miserable conditions to fix broken down machinery in the field. He has surely gone through his fair share of work boots, and I'm hoping he'll hang his up for good soon.

The textured tree trunks were on a piece of lime-green fabric that was really too bright. So I layered some darker green batik in between leaving just pin stripes of the lime. I satin stitched the green down using different coloured bright threads. The cedar branch was started during the Susan Paynter workshop. It was made using zig-zag stitch onto soluble stabilizer. When the thread was built up enough I washed out the stabilizer. The trailing blackberry leaves were thread-painted onto a green background and then cut out. Both are just tacked into place. For the boots, I used a copyright free line drawing for the idea, but then changed them quite a bit. I drew them out onto paper, spray basted the paper to the back of my fabric. I stitched through the paper and then ripped the paper off the back. From the front I did more stitching, this time with stabilizer behind. The laces are thread-painted and there are shadows done with Tsukineko ink pens. This piece is double batted with cotton-poly batting and the quilting is simple straight lines and outline quilting. 

This piece has been the first in a series on trees.

Here is a close up:

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