Sunday, December 04, 2005

Discharging Experiment

" Bucket of Promise"
(Altered photo of discharged fabrics in bucket of soapy water, waiting for final steps)

Finally felt up to doing some creative work today. Since the car accident my body has been hurting, so evenings after a day at the office have been spent resting, reading and getting to bed early. Was very grateful for my sister and Mom to swing by from NYC to Connecticut so I could ride up to the Catskills with them and spend Thanksgiving together. Would not have been able to drive the 3.5 hours alone, both because the car is not up to it now and the body hurts too much. Had an MRI of my neck yesterday to help the doctor determine what the xrays were pointing to as being the cause of the pain & headaches. Will know more next week.

SO, today I decided to experiment. Time to try doing some discharging of cotton fabric with a bleach-gel to create some pattern in the plain colored blocks which were left over from a quilt I made 2 years ago. It was good to do something new and unpredictable.

Since the studio has some other projects in progress, decided to use the kitchen table. Brought down some stamps to try printing with the gel but that turned out poorly.

The gel was too thin and the imprint too light to have much affect and if applied more thickly, got into the crevices and smudged the print, so gave that up after one swatch was done. Will try the paste method another time.

Really enjoyed seeing the colors change: blue turned pink, red turned black then fuscsia, yellow grew in variety of shades on two different fabrics, brown turned golden, a turquoise print and a red-roses print didn't react at all (both were screen prints so would probably need the discharge paste to remove that color). There were several medium toned fabrics which gave subtle variations. All good for mixing.

This black strip of mystery fabric did nothing. Thought it was rayon, but guess not. The black cotton on the other hand, resulted in wonderful bronze-brown effects. Did several design variations with that fabric: lines, swirls and circles. This is one sample, though the flash made the lower area seem much lighter than it actually is:

It felt great to play and discover new possibilities with this method, which I'd never tried before. The fabric pieces will add a nice counterpoint to other fabrics. Looking forward to seeing the final results after drying! That's it for today. Time to rest.

P.S. If you have any helpful suggestions about discharging fabrics, feel free to tell me. Thanks!


PaigeTurner said...

beautiful fabric painting! glad you're feeling up to the creative process!
Beth (a.k.a paigeturner)

Olenka said...

Thank you! Hoping to support the physical therapy with creative expression, a very healing energy. I'm looking forward to more experiments and then seeing which combinations work together.