Beneath the Surface

Here's a link to a video of the "Beneath the Surface" exhibit, curated by Leslie Jenison and Jamie Fingal, as it appeared at the Long Beach International Quilt Festival. I have a piece in the show (above), "Powers of Ten." This piece, with its complex juxtaposition of many kinds of fabrics, was inspired by the Ray and Charles Eames film from the 1960s of the same title. The film looks at the similarities of structure and form of the microscopic and the macroscopic, cells to galaxies. I used a number of the inkjet transfer techniques in this quilt that I have been discussing on the blog lately. Here's a detail showing an inkjet transfer using polyester film:

My quilt isn't part of the video, but there are artists featured here whose names you'll recognize, including regional artists Barb Forrester and Linda Minton, and our own San Antonio curator Leslie!

If you'd like to buy the book catalog, you can find it at BLURB The pages will be included later in the preview, after the show in Houston. You can also see more of the quilts online at the Quilt Inc. site under Special Exhibits.

P.S. This quilt is for sale. If you are interested in it going home with you after the touring exhibit closes, send me an email and we'll talk turkey!

More About Dura-Lar


Several emails and messages have asked me about Dura-Lar. Here's my source for this wet-media film. See the previous post for one way to use it! Grafix is the company.

Grafix Wet Media Dura-Lar is specially coated to accept paints, inks and markers. This clear polyester film works well as a surface for planning painting compositions, as a painting surface, student brushwork practice and printmaking. Wet medias used will not bead, chip or run. Simply wipe with a damp cloth to reuse again!
                                         See Wet Media Dura-Lar in action, check out
                                         this online tutorial and video demo.

Grafix | 5800 Pennsylvania Ave. | Maple Heights, OH 44137 |


You can also use other films through your inkjet printer and acheive similar results, but with more beading and fuzziness -- a nice effect sometimes. Here are a few of the things I've tried that work more or less for this transfer technique:

pocket protectors

the back side (shiny side) of inkjet transperancy film (this is pretty close to the Dura-Lar)

contact paper

the paper backing from stick-on labels

My general theory is if it's 8.5 by 11 inches I will try it through my copier/printer all-in-one (it's an HP older model). I usually put a strip of masking tape on the leading edge to help the copier grab the plastic (or fabric, or whatever).

Last Weekend -- and What's Next at SWSchool



A few After WORDS. We seven had a fabulous workshop this weekend at the Southwest School of Art and Craft. I, as usual, found it a challenge unmet to take photos while facilitating this workshop! I really must train myself to do so, as it would be a lot more interesting to show some photos after the fact.

Instead, I'll just share one or two images that I've been working with using the techniques that were covered in the workshop. I really love the painterly kind of images that using wet media polyester film allows -- whether in black ink only or with color copies. Sometimes the images completely disappear into lovely clouds of colors, and other times they come out incredibly clear -- its all a matter of the density of the ink and the wetness of the underlying fabric.

The quilt above, which I've shown here before, is one called "FAITH IS A LAW," and it uses several photos of my neighbors Century Plant in bloom. I'm beginning to think of this image as a true icon of the Hill Country summer.


Above: Injet print on tissue paper incorporated into paper cloth and fabric art quilt.

Below: Direct inkject transfer using polyester film (look for the wet media film called Dura-Lar for the best results.)


To make prints like these, put a thin, hardly wet layer of gel medium or a mixture of gel medium and water on a piece of flat weave fabric. Blot off extra moisture if you wish. Run a copy or print of your chosen image (the two above were text collages created for my online course Text on the Surface) onto the polyester wet medium film. Flop the image onto the damp fabric and use your hand or a roller to transfer the image. Careful not to move it. Peel off the film and immediated clean it off -- the film can be reused many times.  When the image dries, it will be waterproof -- this does change the hand of the fabric since it uses the gel medium as a transfer medium. You can also transfer onto dry fabric and add water or medium on top to "melt" the pigment and make it permanent on the fabric.  This gives a very painterly look to your transfer and also removes the size restriction for the fabric upon which you wish to print an image.

What's up next at the Southwest School of Art and Craft (downtown San Antonio)? I'll be teaching two offering this fall: Soy Wax Batik on Oct. 30-31

As one of the latest hot wax techniques to make beautiful multicolored fabrics, soy wax eliminates many of the environmental concerns of using a solvent-soluble wax. It can be washed out with hot soapy water! Special techniques allow the application of several dye colors at once. Discover your own vocabulary of marks and patterns. Bring 3 yards of natural fiber fabric (cotton, silk, rayon or linen), an assortment of brushes and stamping tools, and a lunch both days.

2040 | Soy Batik $165.00 Sat & Sun, Oct 30 - Oct 31, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM


And a Monday morning course in October and November on preparing work, finding exhibits to enter, etc.-- a good course for those wishing to work on professional development, no matter what level of experience so far!

Have you ever wanted to enter a juried exhibition but felt intimidated by the requirements, the entry forms, the photography requirements? In this course, Monday will help you find an appropriate exhibit for your work, and your accomplishment level, critique your portfolio of work and help you prepare it for presentation, and guide you through the application procedure including photography, artist statement and biography requirements. You will also spend time working on specific assignments to produce work to fit requirements for a magazine submission appropriate to your media of choice. Acceptance can not be guaranteed, of course, but you'll have a much better understanding of the process. Please see SSAC website for a materials list.

2600 | Surface Design Projects for Exhibition




Mon, Oct 18 - Nov 22, 9:30 AM-12:30 PM

Inkjet to Art


And after.

I'm teaching an Inkjet to Art class in a few weeks at the Southwest School of Art and Craft. One of the great advantages of the school is the wonderful surface design studio. I can almost guarantee that every participant will have a large 8 foot studio table to work on! You can bring your printer to this class or use mine -- you'll learn three separate and distinctive ways to make inkjet transfers of images, photos, drawings -- what ever lives in your computer or can be placed on the glass of an all-in-one copy machine!

For more information, go to the fiber class section of the school's websiter at

Instructor :
Class Level :
Class Time :
Membership :
The selected item is full, please select a different item or combination


Class Sessions: 2

Maximum: 10

Location: Surface Design Studio | Navarro

Learn to print on unusual materials including plastic, interfacing, Tyvec, felt, fabrics of all kinds and films to use directly in art quilts, art cloth or mixed media art. You'll learn how to tease an inkjet printer into using unusual substrates, what kind of printers work best, and how to get around the size limitations of your printer by making poster prints online and using polymer medium to make prints with painterly qualities. If you like, bring your own inkjet printer or use the instructor's to learn the basics. Please see SSAC website for a materials list.



ID Number 2338  
Fee $165.00