Embroidnerd

The embroidered antics of a struggling artist

Contact Me:
embroidnerd@yahoo.com
"The A-Team"
8.5” x 11”
embroidery floss and ink on cotton

This piece is in the Wonders to Come (toys as fine art) group show at The Springbox Gallery in Portland, OR. The show opens tonight (12/9/11) if any locals care to check it out. There’s a wide variety of work from some pretty awesome artists. I based this design on a comic book cover, switching out the original A-team crew for a selection of well known and hopefully recognizable artists. (Just in case: Pablo Picasso, Vincent Van Gogh, Andy Warhol, Frida Kahlo and Salvador Dali) The hardest part was changing the proportions for Andy Warhol. The other figures had the same average human proportions as the originals but turning Mr. T into Mr. W took some serious tweaking. Luckily, I have quite a few life drawing classes under my belt so I’m pretty familiar with the human form. It’s fun to play around with facial features and clothing when you’re trying to create a representation of such iconic people. It helps a lot when they have a signature style (or a wackadoo hair cut, uni brow, twirly mustache, crazy eyes, ginger beard … you get the idea).
"The A-Team"
8.5” x 11”
embroidery floss and ink on cotton
This piece is in the Wonders to Come (toys as fine art) group show at The Springbox Gallery in Portland, OR. The show opens tonight (12/9/11) if any locals care to check it out. There’s a wide variety of work from some pretty awesome artists. I based this design on a comic book cover, switching out the original A-team crew for a selection of well known and hopefully recognizable artists. (Just in case: Pablo Picasso, Vincent Van Gogh, Andy Warhol, Frida Kahlo and Salvador Dali) The hardest part was changing the proportions for Andy Warhol. The other figures had the same average human proportions as the originals but turning Mr. T into Mr. W took some serious tweaking. Luckily, I have quite a few life drawing classes under my belt so I’m pretty familiar with the human form. It’s fun to play around with facial features and clothing when you’re trying to create a representation of such iconic people. It helps a lot when they have a signature style (or a wackadoo hair cut, uni brow, twirly mustache, crazy eyes, ginger beard … you get the idea).

I made these pieces for the Bite-Sized Monsters group show that opens October 8th in San Francisco.  I was watching a little Troma-thon while I worked; Can you tell?  In case you don’t know, Troma is responsible for some serious B-movie gold that is not for the easily offended or squeamish.  I had to make my own frames since there was a six inch square size restriction for all of the pieces.  So i dusted off my skills with the miter box and I think they turned out pretty well.  It’s pretty economical, especially once you have the miter box and saw.  Next time i may try to get fancy and add a piece of plex to the front.  The field journal piece was pretty time consuming but I love the texture all of those little tiny stitches create.  The hardest part ended up being the text.  It should have been the easiest since I used a pen but I’m a perfectionist and you can’t rip out ink like a stitch.  I reminded myself that it was supposed to look like quickly written notes and as long as I didn’t completely botch things it would be fine.  In fact it would have looked off with perfectly straight, evenly spaced lettering. You can check out the show this Saturday, October 8th through November 6th so check it out if you can!  It’s a beautiful space and there will be plenty of gorgeous artwork to take in.

Eddington’s Proof - 10” diameter - embroidery floss on cotton
This was a submission for a juried show in San Francisco.  It wasn’t chosen for the show but neither were over 90% of the 500+ other entries.  Besides it’s all a matter of the juror’s taste so you can’t take it too personally.  They have to create a cohesive collection so pieces can be rejected for any of a hundred reasons from the media and size of a piece to the color scheme.  You can’t take it personally or assume it’s a reflection of the quality of your work.  Anywho, the theme was proof so to get started I decided to find a quote as inspiration.  “Proof is the idol before whom the pure mathematician tortures himself” - Arthur Eddington.  I knew immediately what I wanted to do with the piece when I read that.  The portrait is Rene Descartes surrounded by a variety of new and old mathematical machinery.  I love the look of vintage calculators so this was really fun to draw up and stitch.  I’m especially happy with the candles.  I stitched them freehand (I always sketch everything out but I couldn’t find my fade pen so I just went for it).  It’s always a little disappointing to not make a show but my husband is happy.  He gets more attached to them than I do and hates to see any of them leave our walls.

Eddington’s Proof - 10” diameter - embroidery floss on cotton

This was a submission for a juried show in San Francisco.  It wasn’t chosen for the show but neither were over 90% of the 500+ other entries.  Besides it’s all a matter of the juror’s taste so you can’t take it too personally.  They have to create a cohesive collection so pieces can be rejected for any of a hundred reasons from the media and size of a piece to the color scheme.  You can’t take it personally or assume it’s a reflection of the quality of your work.  Anywho, the theme was proof so to get started I decided to find a quote as inspiration.  “Proof is the idol before whom the pure mathematician tortures himself” - Arthur Eddington.  I knew immediately what I wanted to do with the piece when I read that.  The portrait is Rene Descartes surrounded by a variety of new and old mathematical machinery.  I love the look of vintage calculators so this was really fun to draw up and stitch.  I’m especially happy with the candles.  I stitched them freehand (I always sketch everything out but I couldn’t find my fade pen so I just went for it).  It’s always a little disappointing to not make a show but my husband is happy.  He gets more attached to them than I do and hates to see any of them leave our walls.

Stitch Wars Strikes Back pictures and info

Stitch Wars Strikes Back opened last Friday and runs through September 25th.  If you can’t make it to the gallery, you can still check out pictures of all of the show pieces, link to a price list and purchasing information and even check out some pictures from the opening night reception here.

      Stitch Wars Strikes Back Gallery Setup

embroidery floss on cotton, 7” hoop
I made this hoop for my niece’s 1st birthday and just sent it off to her (only a month late but it took longer than I anticipated).  While I’m pretty darn comfortable drawing A person, drawing a REAL person is always a challenge.  Even the tiniest of changes to proportion or placement of features and at best you’ve drawn A person but not the person you intended.  This is especially true of babies and children since they can easily slip into the bizarre and often disturbing realm of babies with adult features.  Fortunately, this piece turned out just how I hoped it would and almost as gorgeous and my beautiful little niece.  I plan on doing more portraits but for the moment I’ve been side tracked by some teacups (more on that later).

embroidery floss on cotton, 7” hoop

I made this hoop for my niece’s 1st birthday and just sent it off to her (only a month late but it took longer than I anticipated).  While I’m pretty darn comfortable drawing A person, drawing a REAL person is always a challenge.  Even the tiniest of changes to proportion or placement of features and at best you’ve drawn A person but not the person you intended.  This is especially true of babies and children since they can easily slip into the bizarre and often disturbing realm of babies with adult features.  Fortunately, this piece turned out just how I hoped it would and almost as gorgeous and my beautiful little niece.  I plan on doing more portraits but for the moment I’ve been side tracked by some teacups (more on that later).

(clockwise from upper left) “The Runaway Padawan”, “Wait He Cannot”, “The Dark Discovery or The Truth About Vader”
7” hoops embroidery floss and ink on cotton
This is the second series for the Stitch Wars Strikes Back! show at Bear and Bird.  The designs are all based on Norman Rockwell paintings.  If you are interested in purchasing any of them they will be available through Bear and Bird gallery’s website here when the show opens August 12th.

(clockwise from upper left) “The Runaway Padawan”, “Wait He Cannot”, “The Dark Discovery or The Truth About Vader”

7” hoops embroidery floss and ink on cotton

This is the second series for the Stitch Wars Strikes Back! show at Bear and Bird.  The designs are all based on Norman Rockwell paintings.  If you are interested in purchasing any of them they will be available through Bear and Bird gallery’s website here when the show opens August 12th.

Third and final piece in the “emblems” series (not to worry, there are 4 more Stitch Wars pieces I have yet to post).  So, this one strays slightly from the everyday world (unless you’re a resident of the fifteenth century or participate in Renaissance faires).  I wanted to give a nod to the admiral without using the oh so popular “it’s a trap” so I did a little expanded universe research and stumbled upon the knights of Mon Calamari.  I really love how this one turned out and am a bit sad to send it off this week.  This is another one that I finished half of and then set aside.  The mirrored waves were a bit daunting.  I sketched the whole thing out onto the fabric but things tend to get wonky when I put the fabric in the hoop so I have to adjust as I go and step back and adjust more.  I finally sucked it up and just dove in, trying not to over analyze as I went along (there’s always the temptation to give up part way through when I’m not sure it’s going to work but 9 times out of 10, if I just keep going the end result is a success)  The show opens 8/12 and all of the work will be for sale on the Bear and Bird Gallery’s online shop (here)

Third and final piece in the “emblems” series (not to worry, there are 4 more Stitch Wars pieces I have yet to post).  So, this one strays slightly from the everyday world (unless you’re a resident of the fifteenth century or participate in Renaissance faires).  I wanted to give a nod to the admiral without using the oh so popular “it’s a trap” so I did a little expanded universe research and stumbled upon the knights of Mon Calamari.  I really love how this one turned out and am a bit sad to send it off this week.  This is another one that I finished half of and then set aside.  The mirrored waves were a bit daunting.  I sketched the whole thing out onto the fabric but things tend to get wonky when I put the fabric in the hoop so I have to adjust as I go and step back and adjust more.  I finally sucked it up and just dove in, trying not to over analyze as I went along (there’s always the temptation to give up part way through when I’m not sure it’s going to work but 9 times out of 10, if I just keep going the end result is a success)  The show opens 8/12 and all of the work will be for sale on the Bear and Bird Gallery’s online shop (here)

Here’s the second piece in my “emblems” series for the Stitch Wars Strikes Back show.  I actually started this piece before the Jedi Union one (here) but had to step away from it after finishing the first tauntaun (mirror images can be quite frustrating and there’s usually at least some amount of pulling out stitches and adjusting lines).  Like I’ve said before, I love the everyday world of Star Wars.  The idea for this one came from “The Empire Strikes Back”.  Echo Base was a pretty big endeavour; engineering, construction, tauntaun wrangling.  I mean they’ve been repaving the freeway here for at least five years now so multiply that by an entire galaxy’s worth of planets and there’d have to be some kind of organization for all that labor.  And thus the idea of the taunatun teamsters was born.

Here’s the second piece in my “emblems” series for the Stitch Wars Strikes Back show.  I actually started this piece before the Jedi Union one (here) but had to step away from it after finishing the first tauntaun (mirror images can be quite frustrating and there’s usually at least some amount of pulling out stitches and adjusting lines).  Like I’ve said before, I love the everyday world of Star Wars.  The idea for this one came from “The Empire Strikes Back”.  Echo Base was a pretty big endeavour; engineering, construction, tauntaun wrangling.  I mean they’ve been repaving the freeway here for at least five years now so multiply that by an entire galaxy’s worth of planets and there’d have to be some kind of organization for all that labor.  And thus the idea of the taunatun teamsters was born.

Drum roll, Ddddddddddddddddd-cha-CHA!
Here it is; my first fully completed piece for the Stitch Wars show!  I posted a preview pic on facebook but this is the official unveiling.  I’m quite happy with how it turned out.  First off I have to say that I am a Star Wars fan but by no means a Star Wars expert.  I’ve known quite a few people who I would call experts in the field so I’ve seen the movies…a lot.  I really like the idea that there could be this whole everyday world going on in the background.  I dunno why but I find it infinitely entertaining to think about things like ”who forged that bikini?” or “who’s doing all that Jedi laundry?”  Also “is there some kind of passport system involved in interplanetary travel?  do I have to get shots? can I drink the water?”  and so on.  When I do this with other movies it’s generally to be snarky and poke holes in the plot but with Star Wars it’s genuine interest  I guess I just find the mundane details fascinating.  (and I know there’s a whole expanded universe beyond the movies so I’m not the only one)  So here’s an emblem for the unionized Jedi Order.  I sense an upcoming strike in the force… unless we get time and a half on Sundays and bank holidays.

Drum roll, Ddddddddddddddddd-cha-CHA!

Here it is; my first fully completed piece for the Stitch Wars show!  I posted a preview pic on facebook but this is the official unveiling.  I’m quite happy with how it turned out.  First off I have to say that I am a Star Wars fan but by no means a Star Wars expert.  I’ve known quite a few people who I would call experts in the field so I’ve seen the movies…a lot.  I really like the idea that there could be this whole everyday world going on in the background.  I dunno why but I find it infinitely entertaining to think about things like ”who forged that bikini?” or “who’s doing all that Jedi laundry?”  Also “is there some kind of passport system involved in interplanetary travel?  do I have to get shots? can I drink the water?”  and so on.  When I do this with other movies it’s generally to be snarky and poke holes in the plot but with Star Wars it’s genuine interest  I guess I just find the mundane details fascinating.  (and I know there’s a whole expanded universe beyond the movies so I’m not the only one)  So here’s an emblem for the unionized Jedi Order.  I sense an upcoming strike in the force… unless we get time and a half on Sundays and bank holidays.

Quick (and rather blurry I’m afraid) snapshot of the WIP baskets.  I have several hoops going for the Stitch Wars show and one finished piece (that should end the nightmares of missing the deadline).  As you can see we have a nice Slave 1 nearing completion as well as a few tauntauns.  This is what everything looks like mid-project; I assure you I keep it in much better order when I’m not actively stitching although there is no photographic evidence to back that up.  You can see my finished piece here.  Now back to stitching and NetFlix!

Quick (and rather blurry I’m afraid) snapshot of the WIP baskets.  I have several hoops going for the Stitch Wars show and one finished piece (that should end the nightmares of missing the deadline).  As you can see we have a nice Slave 1 nearing completion as well as a few tauntauns.  This is what everything looks like mid-project; I assure you I keep it in much better order when I’m not actively stitching although there is no photographic evidence to back that up.  You can see my finished piece here.  Now back to stitching and NetFlix!