hand dyed fabric

Self Portraits

How do we see ourselves? This is one of the questions I needed to answer in order to create a series of self portraits for a photography assignment. There are so many ways to answer the question!

We often define ourselves by our work and our family. There is truth that we see ourself in relation to others. We are multifaceted and depending on the day and the person we are interacting with, who we are changes.

I changed my mind a few times during the process of photographing this assignment and I finally submitted a total of seven photographs, four of which I am posting. 

dyed hand holding blue hand dyed rayon linen scarf by doris lovadina-lee

hands stitching a fuchsia red scarf doris lovadina lee

hands holding coffee cup with moka in background by doris lovadina-lee

hand caressing a young boy's head by doris lovadina-lee

Artist Statement

Creating a self portrait is a daunting task. How much do you reveal of yourself?

Portrait photography is a photograph or series of photos that captures the essence of the subject. Through this series of photographs I am capturing myself as a Maker.

I was told that my hands are ‘golden’, they create beautiful things. Taking ordinary materials, hands transmute them into objects that are greater than the parts. Hands produce, fashion, create, soothe, and comfort. 

The photographs reveal glimpses of how I view myself as a maker. I Placed myself in the same window with the same background and isolated my hands so that the focus was on the various tasks, some that I do routinely. Others are not tasks, but are essential to nourishing my creativity. Light plays an important role in making, as it is vital to see clearly what your hands are creating. Daylight is used to capture and highlight each image, revealing and shadowing the images. 

Finally my hands create what my mind has already conjured.

 

What would your self portrait look like?

Mid-century modern reupholstery project

Last summer on my way to an appointment, I spotted a mid-century modern two seat lounger on the curb. The upholstery was awful, but the lines of the piece were sleek and modern. When I reached my destination, I called my husband and asked him to look at the piece and to bring it home if he thought it was worthwhile salvaging it.

midcentury modern wooden sette teak doris lovadina-lee

When I arrived home it was sitting on our back deck. The upholstery fabric shouted 1970’s and called for shag carpet. The wood was in great condition, but only three strips of the webbing were not broken. Sitting on the piece was a very delicate matter!

mid-century moderntwo seater teak vintage sofa Toronto doris lovadina-lee

We purchased new webbing and easily fixed the seat. The wood was cleaned and waxed. The upholstery fabric absolutely needed to be changed! I decided that instead of four cushions I wanted to have two. That way I only needed to put in two zippers instead of four and two cushions would look more modern and streamlined.

doris lovadina-lee itajime shibori snow dyed handdyed canvas upholstery fabric

I had been hand dyeing fabrics and scarves and wanted to try dyeing larger pieces of fabric. I was certain I could create an interesting hand dyed piece to use for the cushions. I split the canvas into 2 pieces one for each cushion and cut off a long narrow strip that would be used on the sides. The piece above shows the two ends of the same long strip!

teak midcentury modern sofa snow dyed canvas upholstery toronto dorislovadinalee.com

I snow dyed the fabric and am so happy with the results. The cotton canvas was fan folded and then folded into a triangle. The result of the folding was a tall stack of fabric. I decided to rest the stack of fabric on the bottom of the plastic tub instead of having it suspended above the melted snow.

Danish teak 2 seater lounge chair itajime shibori snowdyed canvas upholstery doris lovadina

As you can see when looking at the photographs, there is a distinct difference in the fabric. The part of the canvas stack sitting in the melted snow absorbed more dye. In the photo above, the cushions show the portion of fabric resting above the melted snow. The design is sharper with more white visible.
hand dyed itajime shibori canvas upholstered mid-century modern two seat teak sofa doris lovadina-lee

In the photo above, the seat cushion shows the part of the cotton canvas that was eventually submerged when the snow melted. This created a softer less distinct pattern. In the photo below, it’s the back cushion fabric that was submerged.

danish style teak lounger snow dyed upholstery doris lovadina-lee

We will be placing this mid-century modern lounger outside on our deck when the weather turns warmer. This summer we will be sitting in style!

Lipstick and Mascara: textile paintings

I have recently completed four new textile paintings. This series called: Lipstick & Mascara are a part of the Precious Snowflakes Holiday Art Sale and Festival. The Yellow House Gallery on Kingston Road in Toronto with the Cobalt Gallery and Clay Studio are hosting this event. Small pieces of original art  will be on display at these two venues and available for sale from November 17, 2017 to January 20, 2018.

original textile painting made by doris lovadina-lee with hand dyed fabric

Lipstick and Mascara 1
©2017 Doris Lovadina-Lee
6 x 8 inches
hand dyed cottons, commercial fabric, thread over canvas
$96.00

Lipstick and mascara2 an original textile painting by dorislovadinalee.com available at yellow house gallery toronto

Lipstick and Mascara 2
©2017 Doris Lovadina-Lee
8 x 6 inches
hand dyed cottons, commercial fabric, thread over canvas
$96.00

lipstick and mascara detail of quilting and fineline piecing of quilting cottons for the Precious Snowflake art show and sale toronto

Lipstick and Mascara 2 – detail
©2017 Doris Lovadina-Lee
6 x 8 inches
hand dyed cottons, commercial fabric, thread over canvas
$96.00

pink and black small artwork by dorislovadinalee.com called Lipstick and mascara made with hand dyed fabrics for the 2017 christmas art show

Lipstick and Mascara 3
©2017 Doris Lovadina-Lee
8 x 6 inches
hand dyed cottons, commercial fabric, thread over canvas
$96.00

Yellow House Gallery on Kingston Road Toronto hosting a holiday art show and sale with Doris lovadina-lee's piece: Lipstick and Mascara

Lipstick and Mascara 4
©2017 Doris Lovadina-Lee
6 x 8 inches
hand dyed cottons, commercial fabric, thread over canvas
$96.00

detail of lipstick and mascara4 with hand dyed cotton and velvet made by doris lovadina-lee

Lipstick and Mascara – 4 detail
©2017 Doris Lovadina-Lee
6 x 8 inches
hand dyed cottons, commercial fabric, thread over canvas
$96.00

This is a great opportunity to purchase original works of art from local artists.

Hand dyeing workshop with the London Modern Quilt Guild

I spent last Saturday teaching an enthusiastic and adventurous group of women hand dyeing with Procion MX dyes. Kristyn of the London Modern Quilt Guild of Canada asked me last year if I would be interested in teaching how I dye fabrics to the guild members. I was excited to be able to share my love of dyeing.

I created kits for all the participants.

Our group set up in a room in the East Lions Artisans Centre in London, Ontario. It is a great facility with access to plenty of water! Necessary for any dyeing workshop.

Some of the beautiful and colourful hand dyed fabrics drying.

One of the very courageous members @melonpatch.quilts brought cotton yarn. The example above is dyed with olive-green and then sprinkled with black. I can’t wait to see the results.

These are just a few of the lovely pieces that the guild members experimented with. T-shirts, silk scarves, linen, silk noile, a canvas hat, and many pieces of cotton were dyed in a rainbow of colours.

Thank you all for letting me spend the day with you, sharing and creating a rainbow of fabrics.

Teaching a Fabric Dyeing Workshop at the London Modern Quilt Guild

In a couple of weeks I will be travelling to London, Ontario to teach an all day fabric dyeing workshop. Kristyn McCoy of the London Modern Quilt Guild contacted me last year to ask if I would be interested in sharing my knowledge. I absolutely was!

Join me and the members of the London Modern Quilt Guild on Saturday July 8, 2017  from 10am-4pm for a hands on workshop exploring colour, folding, twisting and scrunching fabrics to create your own original hand dyed fabrics. Information is available on the Events page.

Hope to see you there!

 

Quilts on the Wall – Hanging the Show

On Thursday afternoon the 3 members of the Quilts on the Wall, Helen, Catherine and I arrived at the S. Walter Stewart Public Library to hang our art quilts. Helping us was Ann – hanger extraordinaire!

We laid out our pieces and chose our location in the Auditorium. This room has a large window into the children`s department and is open to everyone during regular library hours.

This is the first time ever that Catherine has had any of her quilts on display! It was exciting to see our pieces go up on the wall.

Despite our diverse designs, techniques and style, the show looks great.

In all we created 20 new pieces of art based on the theme: Connections. Glimpses of some of the pieces are shown. But, you will have to come to the S. Walter Stewart Public Library during the month of June in order to see all of the pieces.

Hope to see you at the reception.

 

Cosmos quilt

I have fallen in love with dyeing fabric! Each time I dye fabrics I am amazed at the results. Each piece of hand dyed fabric is unique. This beautiful mandala was snow dyed along with a few other pieces of cotton and I wanted to use this piece without cutting into it.

minimal modern mandala art quilt by doris lovadina-lee
Cosmos fabric selection 2

I auditioned a variety of hand dyed fabrics for the outside edges. I decided to quilt as you go, keeping the borders separate from the mandala.

Cosmos fabric selection using Doris lovadina-Lee's hand dyed and snow dyed cotton quilting fabric
Cosmos fabric selection 1

The mandala was machine quilted in a spiral with a walking foot, once I got close to the edge, I stopped, added the borders and continued with the spiral.

Cosmos detail of spiral machine quilting with Bernina sewing machine by doris lovadina-lee
Cosmos detail stitching

I also quilted the corner block in a small spiral, echoing the larger mandala.

Cosmos detail of corner of mandala art quilt with Doris' snow dyed cotton fabric
Cosmos detail corner
snow dyed fabric created by doris lovadina-lee toronto ontario canada
snow dyed fabric

This is one of the snow dyed shibori fabrics that was dyed at the same time as the mandala, so the colours worked well together. I cut into this piece to make the corner block.

Cosmos mandala art quilt by doris lovadina-lee

Cosmos
2016 ©Doris Lovadina-Lee
45 x 50 inches
Hand dyed fabric, thread
$1,200.00

Atmosphere – Indigo dyed quilt

Earlier last year, I dyed some cotton fabric in indigo. The texture and the colour changed from pale blue to a deep indigo. I really liked the design of this piece and I wanted to keep it intact as much as possible. My inspiration to use this indigo fabric was a modern painting I saw in a decorating magazine. The artwork had three large bands of colour running horizontally with the colours blending together.

I pulled a deep indigo piece of fabric and a pure white cotton pique to use with the ombre. I took many photos while deciding on the proportions of the white pique. Some of the photos were taken in the evening as I was working to create this piece for a deadline.

My first attempts had the darker indigo on top. I tried many positions, folding, pinning and moving the white pique until I was certain of the final size.

During this process, I tried rotating the fabric so that the darkest indigo was on top, bottom and either side. Initially, I thought that having the piece run from dark at the top to light on the bottom worked the best.
You can see that I finally decided to orient the fabric so that the lightest colour is on top, moving down toward the darker.

Atmosphere
2016 ©Doris Lovadina-Lee
49 x 42 inches
hand dyed indigo, commercial fabric, thread
$1,200.00

I am happy with Atmosphere. It reminds me of water. For some, it reminds them of snow falling. What does it remind you of?

Crossing Borders Art Quilters Show 2017 – The Hungerford

Our online art quilters’ group finally met in person for our Crossing Borders show this past weekend. Only one of our group, Marjolein Burbank from The Netherlands was unable to make the trip.

Jeanne Simpson curated our show and did a fantastic job displaying our work in her space: Studio 350.

Marcia DeCamp, Anne Anderson, Anne McAllister, Helen Garland, Doris Lovadina-Lee, Clare Clovis, Jeanne Simpson
Marcia DeCamp, Anne Anderson, Anne McAllister, Helen Garland, Doris Lovadina-Lee, Clare Clovis, Jeanne Simpson

Here we are before the studio was opened for First Friday, a monthly arts event held at various venues in Rochester, NY.

Entrance to Jeanne Simpson's studio at The Hungerford
Entrance to Jeanne Simpson’s studio at The Hungerford

The door to Studio 350 and a glimpse into the show.

Each artist had their six art quilts arranged together along with one larger art piece.

Anne Anderson:

Anne Anderson: Crossing Borders (top) and Crumbling Support (bottom)
Anne Anderson: Crossing Borders (top) and Crumbling Support (bottom)

Helen Garland:

Helen Garland: Beautiful Chaos, Crossing Borders (Top row); Roots, Reflections (Middle row); Crumbling Support, Life Cycle (Bottom row) and The Brook Marsh
Helen Garland: Beautiful Chaos, Crossing Borders (Top row); Roots, Reflections (Middle row); Crumbling Support, Life Cycle (Bottom row) and The Brook Marsh

Jeanne Simpson:

Jeanne Simpson: Urban Scrawl, Beautiful Chaos, Reflection (Top row, left to right), Life Cycle, Roots (Bottom row)
Jeanne Simpson: Urban Scrawl, Beautiful Chaos, Reflection (Top row, left to right), Life Cycle, Roots (Bottom row)

Marjolein Burbank:

Marjolein Burbank: Reflections, Crossing Borders (Top row); Life Cycle, Beautiful Chaos (Middle row); Crumbling support (Bottom row), Roots (on pedestal) and The Dress
Marjolein Burbank: Reflections, Crossing Borders (Top row); Life Cycle, Beautiful Chaos (Middle row); Crumbling support (Bottom row), Roots (on pedestal) and The Dress

Doris Lovadina-Lee:

Doris Lovadina-Lee: Venetian Lagoon, Chaotic (Top row); X-Cross, Spiral (Middle row) Foundation, Portal (Bottom row) and Atmosphere
Doris Lovadina-Lee: Venetian Lagoon, Chaotic (Top row); X-Cross, Spiral (Middle row) Foundation, Portal Bottom row) and Atmosphere

Clare Clovis:

Clare Clovis: Waiting for Birth, Drought and Other Things in My Garden (Top row); Learning How, The Me I See In You (Middle row); Apple Crumble, Tea and Elephants (Bottom row)
Clare Clovis: Waiting for Birth, Drought and Other Things in My Garden (Top row); Learning How, The Me I See In You (Middle row); Apple Crumble, Tea and Elephants (Bottom row)
Clare Clovis's Inner Sanctum
Clare Clovis’s Inner Sanctum

Marcia DeCamp:

Marcia DeCamp: Life Cycles, Border Fences, Raining Chaos (top row, left to right) Crumbling Support, Reflections at the Lake, Layers of Roots (Bottom row)
Marcia DeCamp: Life Cycles, Border Fences, Raining Chaos (top row, left to right) Crumbling Support, Reflections at the Lake, Layers of Roots (Bottom row)

Anne McAllister:

Anne McAllister: Life Cycle, A Window on My World (Top row); Crumbling Support, Crossing Borders (Middle row); Beautiful Chaos, 43A (Bottom row)

Guests enjoying a glass of champagne while perusing the show.

I look forward to our next show in 2018!

Crossing Borders Art Quilters Show

The invitation

I was invited to participate in an online art quilter’s group. Crossing Borders began with eight artists from Canada, the US and The Netherlands. Our goal was to share and learn from each other in a creative and non-threatening manner.

The eight artists:

The guidelines:

  1. Create a 12″x12″ finished piece of artwork
  2. Interpret a theme to create artwork
  3. Artwork to be revealed every 2 months on the last day of the month
  4. Post photograph and any explanation on private Facebook page
  5. Comment on each others work

The Themes:

  1. Crossing Borders
  2. Reflections
  3. Roots
  4. Beautiful Chaos
  5. Life Cycle
  6. Crumbling Support

The Show

Now, after one year, we are ready to show our completed artwork. Jeanne Simpson has organized a show in her studio space at The Hungerford, Rochester New York on April 7-8 2017. I hope those of you close by will attend the opening reception on Friday April 7th from 6-9. Seven of us will be in attendance. We would love to speak to you and show you our artwork.

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