Sunday, 19 May 2013
The quilled spiral that I featured in my last post was, of course, only part of the work submitted to the Guild for assessment ... I also had to complete a sampler of quilling shapes, as pictured above. Doing this really helped me to sharpen up my quilling technique as you have to focus on getting every single piece absolutely perfect - and I’m convinced that I’m now a better quiller as a result. So, my message to Quilling Guild members is: do consider applying for Accreditation - it really is a worthwhile process. When you succeed, you genuinely feel as though you are contributing to the continuing evolution of our historic Art.
You can read all about the Accreditation process on the Quilling Guild’s website here.
As a final postscript to this story, I was delighted to discover that my Accreditation piece (the spiral) had actually been featured last week on the BuzzFeed online newsletter alongside many other wonderful examples of modern quilling (including the work of Yulia Brodskaya!!). Have a look at the BuzzFeed link here to see their feature called ‘Quilling: the best craft you’ve never heard of’ ... and prepare to be amazed!
Monday, 13 May 2013
The Guild’s prestigious Accreditation Scheme is described in detail on the organisation’s website here, and involves the submission of a ‘sampler’ of all the officially recognised quilling shapes plus an original piece of work to demonstrate the applicant’s skill. Mine is pictured above.
The idea for this piece sprang from my fascination with the spiral patterns of sea shells, and was initially inspired by the design concept of a pattern which was originally created digitally by Irene Thompson in Photoshop (http://www.photoshoproadmap.com/Photoshop-blog/create-fractals-photoshop/).
I began work on the piece by re-designing and translating the elements of the spiral pattern into a combination of the required quilling shapes to meet the Accreditation criteria, ensuring that sufficient gluing anchor points were created to hold it all together!
I traced the basic outline of the spiral to delineate the outline of each ‘whorl’ of quilled shapes, and then made two photocopies of the tracing which I mounted beneath cling-film on to two separate blocks of mounting board (into which pins could easily be inserted). The first board was used to create each individual quilled shape to the exact required size. The second board was used to assemble the finished quilling.
When placing the anchor pins for each wheatear and alternate side looped piece, it was important to allow for the thickness of mutliple ‘windings’ of the quilling strip, so that the pieces did not exceed the overall dimensions of the whorl boundaries.
I started by quilling the largest section of the spiral, building up the pattern like individual spokes of a wheel. Making the pieces became progressively more difficult as the pattern became smaller, and it was necessary to modify/simplify some of the basic shapes as they reduced in size. When making the smallest pink flowers, it was necessary to abandon pins and create the huskings in my fingers, sizing them by eye.
The complete assembled piece was lifted gently off the cling-film covered board and attached to the blue backing paper by applying glue to the backs of the solid coils, yellow spacing shapes and the inner edge of the spiral. This selective gluing was sufficient to hold the spiral in place, minimising the risk of glue marks on the backing paper which the Guild Assessors always look out for!
To say that I am delighted with the achievement of my Quilling Guild Accreditation would be an understatement. Now, at last, I can relax and look forward to the presentation of my Accreditation Certificate at the Quilling Guild’s forthcoming 30th Anniversary Celebration of Quilling event which is going to be held in Liverpool, UK on 10th - 11th August 2013.
Monday, 4 March 2013
I haven't posted to Quilliance since January ... but that certainly doesn't mean I've been idle!
I'm still quilling avidly, creating things like the embossed frame cards that I featured in my last post; these little quilled 'sculptures' (see above) which I'm proud to say are now on sale in my local Gallery; plus competition entries for the upcoming Quilling Guild 30th Anniversary Celebration of Quilling which is going to be held in Liverpool, UK, on 10 - 11 August 2013. (You might like to check out the Guild's website at www.quilling-guild.co.uk for more details of this unmissable event.)
More than that, however, my involvement with the Guild is taking up increasing amounts of my time - and I'm loving every minute of it! The special Blog which I am now writing exclusively for Guild members has proved to be a great success ... and it now looks as though I'm going to be taking over as Editor of the Guild's highly-acclaimed members' newsletter, 'Quillers Today', with effect from Autumn 2013. So these really are exceptionally exciting times for me. I may not be posting to my own blog so often in future, but I'm still very much involved in online activity via Facebook, Quilling Cafe and other quilling sites. I hope to see you there!
Wednesday, 9 January 2013
My Cuttlebug machine has been working overtime these past few days, creating embossed frames for some more new card designs.
The embossing folders I use have a blank panel in the centre which is perfect for adding a splash of colour in the form of a printed background paper and some quilling.
Somehow the white textured 'frame' sets off the coloured centre very well, I think - especially when the pattern is 'echoed' by the background print. I'm having fun with these!!
Tuesday, 1 January 2013
Well, I'm finally back to making a few cards again after quite a long time spent doing other things (one of which has been launching the Quilling Guild's new blog - such an exciting new development!).
I have always liked the 'framing' effect that embossing brings to a design, and for these cards I used one of my Cuttlebug folders which features an attractive profusion of swirls set around a plain rectangular space in the middle.
I wanted a bold, bright centre for these designs, so decided to glue a piece of coloured card to the centre of each. Then it was 'just' a case of adding some quilling!
The design on the left features a crazy combination of vortex coils, a 'twisted' wheatear, 'beehive' work and closed loose coils ... a bit 'off the wall' in classic Quilliance style, but I like it!
The central card is a bit more conventional, incorporating gold-edged strips to go around the purple shapes in the middle section of the motif.
The right-hand card is another 'crazy' one, featuring two-tone beehive twists inside an asymmetrical ring of vortex coil diamonds.
It's great to be back making cards like these - they give me such a great opportunity to experiment.
Happy New Year everyone!!
Thursday, 20 December 2012
Well, the shortest day of the year is nearly upon us here in the Northern Hemisphere - so I thought it was high time I posted this 'sunshine' card design to remind us all of the warmth of summer!
I made this card for the North American Quilling Guild competition in 2012, in which the theme was 'A backyard garden scene'. I decided to use an oval aperture card as a frame for my quilled picture, which is set on a solid background of vortex coils that form the sky and grass. I love working with square vortex shapes - they are so much more amenable than circular coils for filling up awkward spaces!
The sun is made from a crimped coil, and I have used the beehive technique for most of the foliage and flowers. I also couldn't resist adding a few 'twisted wheatear' shapes for some of the larger leaves. The fence panels are cut from plain gold quilling strips.
The result? An unusual image which was probably way too quirky to gain many votes in the competition. But I'm pleased with it, and I'm sharing it today as an antidote to the gloom of the winter solstice!
Tuesday, 11 December 2012
Christmas quilling project in an elderly care home, a photo by Philippa Reid on Flickr.
I'm so proud of the quilling done recently by my enthusiastic 'students' who live in an elderly care home! All aged in their 80s and 90s, and all suffering from varying degrees of dementia (plus some physical disabilities), they nevertheless managed to produce some lovely quilled snowflakes, baubles and stars to decorate these Christmas trees!
I love working with the elderly ... and they all absolutely love quilling! Because they find it rather difficult to manipulate coils, I generally take a lot of pre-rolled coils with me, in varying colours, so that all they have to do is press the coils into different shapes. Then I can help them with assembling things like snowflakes, and with gluing their quilled shapes down onto a background. Many of them have very clear ideas about where they want their quilled pieces to go ... and I think that, after this particular workshop, we ended up with some lovely Christmas designs!
Now we're already thinking ahead towards quilling some Easter chickens!!