I LOVE talking about blocks, studying blocks, and playing with them in Photoshop... I am always on a quest for great blocks and trying to figure out what makes them so great ... So I started this companion blog that will be devoted to this quest. But also check out my regular blog at http://olderrose.blogspot.com

Monday, December 19, 2011

Framing with Pam Kellogg

I've started embellishing the frames I put around the images on my suffrage quilt.. will post about it on my other blog.  Any time you have an image on a piece of crazy quilting, it's a golden opportunity to add real pizazz and drama to your piece...  A good example is this lovely block by Pam Kellogg. When you see black patches in a block it is usually with a darker palette or jewel tones..  It is very seldom you see it with pastels as Pam has done here...  What makes the black work here???  The hat of course...  not only the color of the hat but the irregular shape of it...   Remember..."parts relating to parts and to the whole."

This is a wonderful piece of lace and Pam has used it to give a real WOW factor to this block...  It draws and holds your eye to the image  and practically caresses the photo... I love the flowers along her bosom and cascading into the block... You can see in this photo that using either all lace or all flowers would have overwhelmed the image.

When I started this blog I did a whole series of posts on framing images.... If you missed them you might want to give them a look.... http://blocktalkwithgerry.blogspot.com/search/label/frames

Sorry I've neglected this blog of late but it seems like I've barely touched the ground since Wichita and the next 3 weeks don't look much better... Plus doing the photo shop examples are very time consuming... But I will be back mid-January...  Happy Holidays everyone!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Response to comment!

Yesterday I received a comment that I am more than happy to respond to.....  "I have noticed in the past that you and many others talk about how elements should lead the eye around a block.....  But in this block you have placed the blue bird which is a fairly strong element flying right on out of the picture .... would you mind commenting on that please?"

Well when I placed this bird my eye was following the contour and the thrust of the bird which is upward.....not outward..

 In fact in my eye every element of this bird goes up ...not out.!!!

And so to me it was completing the path in the block.

To be flying right out of the block the bird needed to be tipped forward for the contour to aim it in that direction.   Note that the most important directional element of the bird is along the back...When placed side by side I hope you can see the difference... Of course Angela could tip the bird even further upward or place it closer to the rocks......

I am happy to answer questions at any time...

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Makeover for Ritva's Art Nouveau Block

I would have sworn I blogged about this block but for the life of me I couldn't find in on either blog... This block was from last year and when I ran across it in a file I was unhappy with the upper part...  I  asked Ritva to send it back and let me rework it and she graciously did.

I didn't like the foliage upper left and I don't know what processed me to have the bee flying off the block..  I found it very distracting... I also didn't like the bit of lace centered at the top...  So to me the whole top of the block was weak and wimpy and the elements didn't work well together at all.

I thought the fix would be simple...just add to the foliage and remove the bee and replace it with a directional bug.. But of course things didn't quite work as I planned... I had put the bee there with such vigor that I knew if I removed it there might be a scar on the fabric and so to be on the safe side I decided to leave it in place...

So I did redo the grass so it flows across the top to carry the eye... I still wanted a bug that was directional and added a dragonfly..  I kept it close to the bee so they worked as a single unit but larger to make the bee's direction less important...

So I am happy with the foliage and that the bit of lace is gone.. It would have been nicer if the bee could disappear but not happening....  Even with the bee, the top section is stronger and in balance with the rest of the block...

I love the hummingbird on this block...it was done on felt with lovely watercolor silk threads... When I added it to the block I stuffed it slightly with batting so it is very dimensional when you see it in person... So it will be popped in tomorrow's mail and off again to Ritva in Finland...  And my thanks again to her for returning it to me...