Random Musings on Art and Life


Try A Beaded Background

February 2, 2017

When I decided not to finish the entire Paint, Stitch, Bead project I was working on last summer, I had every intention of finishing up two sections and having them framed. That was only (ahem) five or six months ago, so it was time to add a beaded background and git ‘er done!   The…

BYO Batik: A Renegade Stencil Experiment

November 24, 2016

With time set aside for experiments with Renegade Stencils during my retreat, I decided it was time for some BYOB. In case you’re feeling like you’ve encountered yet another strange word in the “Shelly Dictionary,” BYOB stands for Build Your Own Batik. We’ll save the bottled spirits for another time! [Tweet “Build your own Batik…

Design Magic in Chapala: From Fountain Tiles to Fabric

November 17, 2016

Design Magic is the title of a book that I wrote in 2010. It’s a methodology for creating a design using a square of paper, turning the design into a pair of positive and negative (equal and opposite) stencils, and adding the pattern to fabric with Shiva Artist’s Paintstiks. The process described in the book…

Renegade Stenciling with Liquid Paints

October 27, 2016

If you’ve been hanging around Cedar Canyon for more than a day or two, you know that I’m a huge fan of Shiva Artist’s Paintstiks. I love them for stenciling on fabric because they don’t run, drip, or seep under the edges of my stencils. So, imagine my surprise when an experiment with Renegade Stencils…

Pine Beetle Rubbings

October 13, 2016

Last week I posted photos of Pine Beetle Art. In a nutshell, they are photos of tree trunks showing the paths taken by pine beetle grubs as they tunnel around under the tree bark – and slowly kill the trees. Oddball inspiration? Yes. But inspiration nonetheless. Today, I have photos of Pine Beetle Rubbings. No, not rubbings…

Pine Beetle Art: A Bit of Oddball Inspiration

October 6, 2016

Are you shaking your head at the thought of art by tiny critters that kill trees? Good. That means I’m not alone. But… as I’ve been hiking around a ranch in South Dakota, that is exactly what I’ve found. Pine Beetle Art. Seriously! [Tweet “Art and destruction go hand in hand when Pine Beetles go…

Water Lily Quilt: A Touch of Hawaii Without All The Work

September 29, 2016

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] As I was looking through the original samples from the Paintstiks on Fabric book, I was reminded how far we have come on this Paintstik adventure. I say “we” because it really has been a shared journey. I have had the opportunity to teach thousands of students and readers to use Paintstiks on fabric,…

Paintstiks on Fabric: How It Started

September 22, 2016

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] When I was filling out the entry form for the 2017 AQS Show in Paducah, I realized how far the Paintstiks on Fabric adventure has come in the past 17 years. Here’s what grabbed my attention.   The folks at AQS expanded the section on the entry form to include the most common techniques…

Lake Superior Lessons

September 15, 2016

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] Lake Superior offers a lot of lessons if you can slow down enough to listen. I was fortunate to spend a few days on the North Shore last week with my sisters and our husbands. We were all in need of a Time Out from the general busy-ness of life, and a lovely log…

Permission to Stop

August 11, 2016

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] The last time I sat down to stitch on my Paint-Stitch-Bead project, I knew in my heart it wasn’t worth finishing. Parts of it are fantastic. But as a whole, there are too many things I would do differently if I started over today. Can I be really honest? It’s really hard for me…