Sunday, September 10, 2023

Quilt Reveal: Making Friends


 I finished the portraits quilt I showed you in the last post.

I used the index card portraits as my inspiration, so I used background fabric that would result in the same size as the index cards.

I used fusible applique to add the body and the body parts: hair, whites of eyes, eyeballs, nose (optional), mouth, and clothing.


I decided to use the binding fabric as a border instead, and since it looked like a frame, I decided to birth the quilt instead of bind it.

I used embroidery stitches to stabilize the quilt instead of stitching in the ditch.

I added straight stitches in the border to mirror the look of the frame.

Finally, I used free motion quilting to secure all the fused pieces.

Although I had a bit of a panic when I thought the portraits would look like aliens instead of people, I settled on the idea and am really happy with how it turned out.

It took me 24 working hours to edit the video, since there were so many clips as it took me a little less than two weeks to make the quilt, and the software added extra, duplicate, and unnecessary clips.


15 Minutes to Stitch Week 34, 35, 36

 I have been awful about reporting my 15 minutes to stitch progress this year.  The good news is that I did stitch every day these three weeks and even finished a quilt - the Making Friends quilt I have been showing you on this post.

15 minute days these weeks --21 out of 21
15 minute days this year -- 183 out of 253 days
Success rate  = 72%
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 15 Minutes to Stitch follow this link to see all the other people who participate in this challenge

Friday, August 25, 2023

My Weekly Painting and Quilting Progress


I had a fabulous arty week. I have finished five 8" x10"paintings so far, all based on quilt blocks. I have five more blank canvases to make for this series. I will use bigger canvases for the next series. 

I found out that my video problems with Youtube had to do with system upgrades, internet speed, and low battery and not really a bug in any software. I am getting better with the software although the things I want to do is much harder to do than talking head videos.

15 Minutes to Stitch Week 33

I did start quilting though. I am making a quilt based on the index card portraits I have been making. The blocks will finish at 3x5 to match the size of the index cards. I am having fun with these, with fusible applique, but the pieces for the facial features are so fiddly.

It is taking time to make this since I am also recording my process so I can make a Youtube video out of it.

15 minute days these weeks --7 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 162 out of 232 days
Success rate  = 70%
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Sunday, August 13, 2023

My "Vacation" So Far



Zoey and I have been enjoying our summer vacation so far staying inside the air conditioned house. The squirrels outside are enjoying eating and gathering the walnuts from my neighbor's trees and since it is raining walnuts outside and the bees are a-buzzing, Zoey does not want to go outside by herself.

It is nice to be outside enjoying nature and watching Zoey's antics for these "outings" but they aggravate my allergies so it is good and bad at the same time. 

Quilt and Color


Starting a YouTube channel has been much more difficult than I thought. You can skip this part and go on to the next section if it gets boring, but I wanted to record it so someday (hopefully soon), I can look back on it and say "Poor me, the things I didn't know. They had such simple fixes too."

My original thought was that it would take me about an hour to record a ten to twenty minute video, and then an hour or two to edit and publish it. I could publish one a day. I had five "practice" videos where I could just show things I have already made and then I could move on to making things and showing tutorials. It is taking me so much longer than that to publish the videos that I haven't been able to get to the quilting content yet.

I had to record the first video, the scrapbook, three times. I didn't have a tripod and getting the journal in the screen and at a good pace took quite a bit of doing. I linked that video in my last post.

I gave myself a budget and bought an overhead tripod, which is somewhat defective in its other features, but the tripod part works and I was able to get that one published. I couldn't get my voice to be loud enough so I bought a microphone as well, but decided to let the first one be music only. I know I sometimes prefer that.

The second video, the index cards, was therefore easier to film and I was able to record my voice, but I wanted to be able to edit out the blunders, the long pauses and the coughing and sniffing. I used the same free software that I used for the scrapbook, Lightworks, and it was working fine with all the edits, but then all of a sudden it kept saying "offline". I didn't know why it said that because I was able to use the internet fine for other things. I had to start over again two additional times before I could get a video that was good enough to publish. The cards are not in chronological order, but they weren't in perfect order anyway so I am not going to worry about it.

The goal is more to learn about how to do things and improving with each video, so although I don't like publishing things that aren't perfect, I think they are good enough to do the job they are supposed to do.

For the third video, Review of Arteza Paints, I decided to  so I switch to a different software, Davinci Resolve, which was similar to Lightworks but I had to learn it as well. It worked fine for a while but then it also eventually said "offline". It turns out that the software is cloud-based, and the problem was at my internet provider's end. I wound up taking what I had created in Davinci Resolve, moving it to Lightworks, finishing it off and publishing it. 

For my fourth and future videos, I increased my budget yet again and buy Adobe Premiere Elements which will be able to handle the basic functions I need and not be cloud-based. It is causing me problems where my voice is not syncing properly to the video so when I edit, I can hear my voice in stereo, with one voice being a second or two off the second voice. Very annoying. At this point, I do think Lightworks is a better software than Premiere Elements, but I think I need to give myself more time to learn both.

There is a backlog of the list of videos I want to post. I hope the list doesn't get as long as the list of quilts I want to make!

15 Minutes to Stitch Weeks 29, 30, 31 and 32


My last 15 minutes to stitch post was July 16. I didn't realize that it had been that long. Sorry. You can probably guess that this means that I haven't been able to get to any quilting content. I haven't come up with a good schedule of working and playing.  I did take time off from recording and editing videos to paint three canvases, which felt like cheating, so I have been creative, but haven't gotten to the fabric yet. Did you notice the rail fence in the background?

I don't know what this person is doing, but doesn't look as confident as the inspiration. Whoever looks at it can decide, but I am calling it Throw Caution to the Wind.
It will come soon though, I promise. I do have plans to make portraits on fabric. The success rate looks so sad since I was expecting it to increase now that the work project is over.

15 minute days these weeks --0 out of 28
15 minute days this year -- 155 out of 225 days
Success rate  = 69%
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Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Starting a YouTube Channel


The work on the project for my day job is basically complete, so I will probably not be working for the next two months.This year, I decided to use my time off more productively by launching my career as an artist. I don't know what that means yet. It will probably have something to do with making and selling quilts. 

I have been thinking about starting a YouTube channel anyway, as a way to show a video of the quote quilt, and the index cards and art journal that I made. These types of things aren't as easy to show with photos on the blog.

I created the channel called Quilt and Color and posted my first completed art journal. I wanted to get practice on making videos before I start showing the quilts.

I decided that if I was going to take the time to learn to record and edit videos, I might as well go in and try to create a channel that will be monetized. To make sure viewers have a reason for coming back, I will offer tutorials and product reviews. I know that you are supposed to stay in your niche, so I am using a broad niche to begin with - just a creativity channel so I can paint and color and quilt and anything to do with art. The people who don't recommend staying with a niche said to just throw spaghetti on the wall and see what sticks. That way you can focus on what your viewers want.

I won't spam this blog with all of my videos, but I will let you know about what I publish from time to time. If you are interested, I would love it if you subscribe and watch my videos. I need at least 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of viewing just to become monetized. I appreciate your help.and support you have given me on my blog and would love it if you would do the same for the YouTube channel.

Sunday, July 16, 2023

Quilting and Life Updates

 I have continued my index card a day project, usually making many more than one a day. This drawing is based on a photo I took during the first neighborhood tour we went to. Most of the videos I have watched about drawing say to start with a photo or actual items instead of using your imagination. It lets you really see the shapes and the shading when you have something real in front of you. 

I am really happy with this drawing because it does look like a person and a dog, even though I do need to work with my shading to make it look like shading and not underarm sweat.


My work will be winding down soon, which means that I am getting excited about having more sewing time. The clematis flowers don't look very healthy, but I really like how they look painterly.

We went on another neighborhood tour with the library. This sculpture was moved from the library to a park.

15 Minutes to Stitch Week 27 and 28


I didn't get a chance to do any quilting on week 27 as I put everything away to get ready for a fourth of July gathering, but on week 28, I took out the Spicy Stars quilt and took an inventory of what is done and what the next steps are. I figured out the measurements for the side triangles and corner triangles. I

15 minute days these weeks --7 out of 14
15 minute days this year -- 155 out of 197 days
Success rate  = 79%
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Sunday, July 2, 2023

Index Cards


I have continued to participate in the Index Card a Day challenge. I am having so much fun with these portraits that I may have made all of these on the same day, Saturday. They are so fun to make, it is hard to stop at just one.

15 Minutes to Stitch Week 25 and 26


Zoey understands that when I am painting, I am not quilting. 

15 minute days these weeks --0 out of 14
15 minute days this year -- 148 out of 183 days
Success rate  = 81%
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Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Quilting, 15 Minutes at a Time


This is one of the houses that we saw during our tour I told you about last time last time. It is such a fun house, and I found an app that makes the photograph look painterly.

15 Minutes to Stitch Week 22

One of the posts I saw on Facebook was someone complaining about the state of a famous deceased quilter's studio. I scrolled on by and am hoping to avoid getting on the soapbox. I love that people can choose for themselves what amount of order they need in their own house. 

I don't know if I did any quilting this week, so I will mark this week as a 0. No cheating.

15 minute days this week --0 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 134 out of 155 days
Success rate  = 86%


15 Minutes to Stitch Week 22

My roses are still hanging on and smelling lovely. I puttered around this week, with cleaning in the sewing room, trimming Aunt Daisy blocks and cutting pressing and making parts of Spicy Stars and Unallocated blocks.

15 minute days this week --7 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 141 out of 162 days
Success rate  = 87%

15 Minutes to Stitch Week 23

 Again this week, I puttered around this week, with cleaning in the sewing room, and cutting pressing and making parts of Spicy Stars and Unallocated blocks. I've been working on the index cards.

15 minute days this week --3 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 148 out of 169 days
Success rate  = 87%