Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Imagination brought to life through applique, altered photos and Sally Papin's skill

Sally Papin sees such beautiful colors in her meticulous world of applique. And when she includes altered photography in her work her imagination goes wild. Fortunate for us, she's a talented artist who can create whatever pops into her brain. I'm so pleased to present Sally and her imaginative, creative, beautifully stitched quilts. She proves that fabric art can be fun and whimsical and filled with fantasy without being childish. She creates a different world that is fun to visit! -- Dawn

Thank you Dawn for the lovely invitation to be among such a group of wonderful artists.

I come to quilting from a spinning and weaving background. I fell in love with wool and silk, dying, blending, spinning and creating great yarns for knitting and weaving. As time progressed I switched over to fabric and quilting where I have dabbled in different quilting applications.

I did not start quilting traditional style quilts. Instead, I jumped right into free style quilts where I could use my photography as a template tool, giving my craft its own identity. Searching out fabrics always seems to present the hardest challenge and this year I have taken the News Year Resolution to finally get busy and hand dye some fabrics. I fear that might become its own obsession, as I look back on dying wool and silk!

My favorite quilt to date is a combination of a pattern called Circle Play and altered photos – it’s the quilt banner on my blog.

It was the first time I ever used the fabric in the printer. The blocks also have some lovely old looking upholstery fabric giving tapestry effect. There is nothing special about the pattern itself but the way the old world prints which I altered in Photoshop interacted with the fabrics made it really rich and truly old world looking.

In the last couple years I have worked on some interesting pieces using altered photos. This really opened up lots of ideas for me. But I have limited printer capabilities and feel restricted with the price of ink so my ideas have now gone beyond this to more of a watercolor painting on whole cloth then quilting. This is however a 2010 leap of faith that my ideas will please my friends and myself.

I have finished a few complicated appliqué quilts and I have tried all the methods of templates, glue sticks, as in Birds of Paradise, and I have come to the conclusion that I prefer using just needle turn with some aid of toothpicks and a hint of nail polish for those light woven fabrics.

I love the batik fabrics – they are my favorites of all time, and the Fossil Fern fabrics are a close 2nd. They are light woven fabric but have such an incredible array of color that they fit into many of my quilts.

I like to use embroidery floss to outline some of my quilted pieces but I don’t use the floss for the needle turn, I go back and outline after I am done as I have done in ToadBoy, and the Beasts.

The Toad Boy pattern is from Susane Marshall's book and the one I call the Beasts is a replica of her And Dragons Too - no pattern, I just sketched it and created it because I loved it so much. The Birds of Paradise is an old pattern from Pat Campbell, and My Cats Garden is an old pattern 1999, from Maggie Walker. I just have updated them with a new more vibrant looks. Without these ladies "over the top" gorgious applique patterns and ideas I might have overlooked the wild and wonderful whimsey applique holds without it becoming too silly and childish. I am really drawn to these difficult pieces but have found that I bail and dont finish quilts with repetition.

The end of 2009 I began a blog – and wanted to devote it to just my fabric art. So far it’s been very rewarding and it keeps me focused. It’s been fun sharing and teaching what I do with friends via the web, reviving patterns and ideas.

My Cats Garden, as I mentioned was produced from an old 1999 pattern. It really came to life with the availability of some of the new texture fabrics and batiks. I have wanted to do this quilt for a long time and I don’t even have a cat!

What I enjoyed about finishing it was to see how the background blocks of different colors and sizes gave a lot of shading to the whole quilt and helps keeps the eye moving giving it a place to rest.

I hope you will enjoy my blog and visit often, 2010 should be magical.

Sally Papin

Photos: 1. Roberto (detail from Bird of Paradise). 2. Appliqued Bird of Paradise 3. Circle Play (altered photographs) 4. ToadBoy 5. Detail of ToadBoy 5. Beasts from And Dragons Too detail 6. My Cat Garden


Lisa said...

Amazing work!!!

Fran Smith said...

What a beautiful combination of the various crafts. Very inspiring.