Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Leaf Thief

My husband and I were out running errands a couple of weeks ago and stopped at the Hilton Hotel for lunch; they have a nice little restaurant in the lobby and some mighty beautiful plants. On my way out, I passed by this wonderful looking one with really cool looking leaves. Hmmmm - no one was around. Should I or shouldn't I? My husband - the FBI guy was embarrassed, thought I shouldn't (I thought I should) right? A whole bunch of cliches ran through my mind - you only live once, life is too short, nothing ventured - nothing gained. Nothing really fit this situation, so what the heck. He went to the restroom and while he was gone, I did it! Yup! I'm a leaf thief! Well I half expected to see the leaf police with a fluorescent orange jumpsuit and handcuffs running down the street, but not so! So here I am in my studio feeling a tad bit guilty but also happy with this wonderful new treasure for screenprinting.
Whether to use the front or back - I think I'll try both. I know it's best to use the side with the most texture but both were equally good.
Isn't this a great looking leaf!
I laid it down on some paper and squeegeed some thickened dye over it. This is the leaf on the paper after I lifted up the screen.
I did a screen of each side.
The results were less than exciting but I do keep my "leaf" in a ziplock in the refrigerator (they can last a long time this way) and plan to try it again.
This was the first print when there was a lot of dye in the leaf area which did not loosen and break down yet; the first print is usually not that good. I'm always tempted to do the first one on paper and not waste the fabric but once in a rare while, the first print is good so I hate to take the chance. I will go back and paint some thickened dye in the white area.
I also did some Maple leaves in several colors.
This one (below) was done with green dye but very little of it came off the screen. The white areas were filled in with Indigo mx and Smokey Grey mx - a favorite of mine. Smokey Grey is a wonderful bluish-grey color and very soft.
Here is a later print off the same screen where the heavier dye areas (green) loosened and printed on fabric and the background almost exhausted of dye appear much lighter.
I really enjoy working with the leaves - such fun results.
Until next time

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