Friday, October 23, 2015

Creating Butterflies

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I've been working on a little project. Or maybe not so little. It's just slightly smaller than eight feet wide. 



Monarch butterflies have been on my mind, as they are currently migrating through California, headed to Mexico. 




I drew out a huge butterfly, and then inked in its details. Then, I perforated my drawing. 




I prepared a large piece of painted fabric, and then I dusted talcum powder through the holes I'd made. 




I had in mind a symmetrical composition of two butterflies, so I just flipped my perforated drawing upside down and dusted talc through the back side of the drawing. 

This technique of drawing a full sized cartoon and then pouncing some kind of chalk or charcoal through holes pricked in the drawing goes back hundreds if years. I understand there are places on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel where the transferred charcoal pounce-marks are still visible. (I assume one would need to climb scaffolding to see this.)




Once I had both butterflies on the fabric, I inked in their details, and then started cutting away the fabric. 

If you're trying to figure out the scale of this project, look at the top of the above photo. Those are my feet. 




I flipped the fabric upside down on my work table. 






I glued fabric on to the back of my fabric. This was a step I should have better figured out before I started. I struggled for several hours, before figuring things out. 

I may have really screwed things up at this stage. I got one butterfly and the central chrysalis glued together, and I'm going to let everything dry overnight. 

Let's hope this works.  It's rather scary-looking at this stage. 




I couldn't resist taking a quick look underneath, to see what the front side looks like. I've got some glue bleeding through my background fabric, and my orange fabric isn't perfectly aligned. 

But it's still pretty sweet. 






2 comments:

Sudoku Crazy said...

That is amazing!

Andrea Palma said...

I love it! So will it be for a wall, a quilt, suspended in the air? How will it be displayed?

Florida four

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