Monday, December 16, 2013

Architecture STUDENT - made ....

Student-made + Designed furniture by FAMU's architecture students this semester. And yes... We are a talented crew!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Posting my daily finds from my blog

I decided to try using my blog to post my daily finds. These are just random things that strike my fancy. Visual puns, eye candy, inspirational quotes, my  take on what I find beautiful, stunning, clever.....

So for this morning-- it's these:
"Happy Change a Purses"
smile with me, why don 't cha?

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

More Laser Cutter Experiments

A Laser cutting machine experiment. Kinda scary " engraving" of me onto red matte board. I used a PDF image and set the machine to "raster" cut. It etches away the top layer of the board to reveal the paper plus beneath the top layer. 

Don't like this etching...but it does lead me to think of other possibilities.

Thursday, August 1, 2013


The advance copy of my book is now in my elated little hands! So excited and so honored…

It can be ore-ordered here on Amazon:

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Laser Cut Fabric -- Central Park Trees

Yesterday laser cut silk organza layers. The holes represent the outline of the trees in Central Park. These laser cut experiments yielded something quite ethereal and beautiful. 
I am SO looking forward to adding other layers of laser cut LINES AND SHAPES!

Catching up with things I have been meaning to do for a few weeks. I finally created an author's page on Amazon's "Author Central":

It is a rainy day here in north Florida.... a good day for staying in and doing miscellaneous things. I'll be working on my newest piece about Seneca Village in Central Park. Last week, I laser cut several sheer layers for it. Maybe I'll post a few pics this evening.

But for now....a little nap is in order;)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Day 2 -- Laser Cutting Residency

I spent the morning preparing my illustrator files that I had transferred from AutoCAD. Then I prepared the fabrics that I was going to use....ironing 6 sheets of 24" x 36" fabric. I chose cotton organdy for the large lines and shapes. Silk screen fabric was selected for the fine lines. My previous testing indicated that this particular fabric would not fray and I was concerned about that for the filagree -type lines. I spent some time patiently applying Misty fuse across the surface of each piece.

I did this all in preparation to start my quilt about Central Park and Seneca Village in New York City. This afternoon I laser cut the street grid around Central Park as well as the major and minor pathways throughout it. 

Here is a link that describes the displacement of a strong and viable African-American community to build Central Park:

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Day 1-- Week 2 at the Laser Cutting Residency

During the first week I made a catalogue   documenting the settings needed to laser  cut many types of fabric.

This week I am making a small experimental piece using the extra laser cut samples. Part of the challenge was understanding how to use Adobe Illustrator. I started by drawing a scoring/ cutting template using AutoCAD and then I saved it as an EPS file. Then I was able to open the file in illustrator. The laser cutting machine interfaces with ai files and PDF files. You have to put the lines to be scored on its own layer and the lines to be cut are on a second layer. As you can see, a lot of planning has to go into this process!

I wanted to see how I could use scoring to help me locate items to be fused to a background peace. In addition I wanted to use scoring as a guide for sewing seams.I am learning a lot as I go  -- even the mistakes are quite useful.

I won't go into excessive detail here… i may write an article about this experience. But please take a look at the images you see above.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Residency Post -- Day 2

Today was a good day. I really got into the zone of doing some organized testing  of using the Epilogue Laser Cutter for scoring and cutting fabric. The images above summarize my process:

1. The laser cutter in action.
2. The fabric right after being cut.
3. The fabric after I removed the fabric to create the voids. Here you see a "Lace-like" result. -->EXCELLENT<--
4. Another image of the "Lace". I am focusing on creating "positives" -- the voids being "negatives". 
In case you are interested here is a very short video of the laser cutter in action:

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Residency Post -- Prep for Day 2

During day 1, I spent most of my time just settling in. In addition I did some pre-  testing in preparation for what I'll be working on tomorrow ( Day 2)

Tomorrow (Day 2) should be a busy day. Plenty of trial and error! I will be conducting the first round of laser cut tests on about 25, 4" x 6" fabrics with a crisp hand. Fabrics Include linen, cotton, silk organdza, crinolin, buckram, and polyester.

Today I spent time preparing the research matrix. It will include information such as the power, frequency, speed, time, etc. of the laser. I will be using a Epilog laser cutter that has a 24" x 36" bed. 

I want to document how well the machine cuts obtuse and acute angles as well as straight and curved lines. In addition to actually cutting the fabric-- I will be doing some testing on engraving the fabric. Yes, engraving fabric, how splendid is that!

Below is a drawing that I prepared in AutoCAD and then translated it in to Adobe Illustrator. The Turquoise lines represent cuts through the fabric  and the red lines represent engraved lines. This particular laser cutter interfaces with vector-based files. As you will see in subsequent blog posts I will be creating a kind if "lace". 


Monday, July 1, 2013

Mapping Time -- Seneca Village In Central Park


Path/Place – Line/Shape - Figure/Ground 

                              Light/Shadow -
                              Positive/ Negative 

Just started my residency at the Florida State University Facility for Arts Research ( FAR). I will be conducting some laser cutting experiments using abou 25 different types of fabric. This will lead to an Art Quilt map about Seneca Village, an African American Community displaced to build Central Park in NYC. 
Please visit FAR's blog on my work!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Immersed in the Making Process of Creativity

It was one of those rare days in 
studio when you think it's all clicking... When one "knows" what an artwork "needs"...

Thursday, June 13, 2013


A site plan inspired piece now moves towards having dual readings. 
It's part of my idea about creating  "complex compositions" inspired by architectural drawings sometimes called composite drawings. This is my idiosyncratic pint of view.
My goal is merge a site section with a site plan. What on the earth's surface informs the "space" beneath. More about this later....

Been wrestling with this  piece since my summer break began. I almost tossed it. * sigh*

So here is a glimpse into how I work.... Moving toward resolution 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Make mistakes faster

Sometimes a piece will reveal itself, become clearer and even get better through perseverance AND MAKING MISTAKES FASTER! Then again sometimes not! 

After sitting through a jury selection process today ( I was NOT selected, yay!)......I went to the studio to work on a piece I had been struggling with since the beginning of summer break.  While waiting to see if I'd have to be a juror I mulled over what the next step should be. And... after doing some sketches, I had a better sense of what I should do! 

I love those moments, don't you? A few massages later my eyes this quilt has become what "it" needed to be. 

Soooo– let's hope that I feel this way tomorrow. Going to give it that "first glance-- gut feeling" test tomorrow. Putting it out of mind for now.....

Monday, June 3, 2013

".......your book is brilliant! " says artist Mary C. Nasser

Quilt Artist Mary C. Nasser is a painter and art educator living in the  St. Louis Area, where I spent almost 6 years following graduate school. 

She and I share something else-- an affinity for maps as design inspiration for our work. Below you will see one of her beautiful art pieces called: "Cook Lake" done using prisma color pencil and acrylic on paper. You will find it in her Etsy shop.

Last week she received an advance copy of my book Art Quilt Maps from my publisher. Hope you will take a few moments to read her review on her blog at:

Art Quilt Maps will be released September 2013, and is available for preorder on Amazon!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

ART QUILT MAPS..."motivates readers to explore." says Quilting Art Magazine

Quilting Arts Magazine approached me about getting an advance copy of my new book "Art Quilt Maps". They were interested in reviewing it for the June/July issue. Much to my pleasure, I received a copy of this issue in today's mail.

Needless to say, I hope some of will read the read and perhaps get a copy of my new book! It is now available for pre-order here:

Friday, May 17, 2013

He's the C-U-R-A-T-O-R......

In Scotland, the term "curator" is used to mean the guardian of a child. I can relate to this definition, for me my work IS like my child -- sometimes so much goes into giving it life.
So here you see my dear nephew Jahfre Colbert...the curator! He was kind enough to use his curatorial skills to arrange my quilts (babies) in my studio space. He has been so helpful in getting my artwork presented in the right way in my studio/salon space.

This awesome young man has worked part-time at various galleries in the Orlando area while attending the University of Central Florida. He's going to paint the wall at the left, jet black for some extra pop to feature the black and white quilts on this wall. He has designed an ingenious method of attaching the work to the wall.... This will be the next step when he returns in a few weeks.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Day 1: Workshop in Rochester

Here's a little peek of what the Genesee Guild members taking my class were up to. There were 11 artists from the guild and even one from Canada. 

They made several paper collage studies one each exemplifying one of the seven principles of design. And then in the afternoon I taught them a surface design technique. Tomorrow the goal is to make seven  mini works of art.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Spring Experiments in Laser Cutting and 3D Printing

Wasn't able to work in my studio much this semester but I did get a chance to experiment with some new technology. This semester myself my architecture students and I got a chance to play with a 3-D printer and a laser cutter FSU's Facility for Arts Research.

On the left, you'll see some of my students' Models. On the right are some of my little experiments using the laser cutter. I made a little paper "quilt" (The white and gray piece) As well as a ring of black Paper Modules. I call it "The

I am trying to obtain a residency at the facility so I can do some experiments with fabric. I have some ideas about doing a series of lasered cut abstract maps that use a lot of layering and transparency to map the change of a place across time.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Childhood Artwork


Was at my Dad's house. My family & I were strolling down memory lane as we sorted through Dad's possessions for him, he is about to make a major life shift. Many of us will be at this type of crossroad soon enough. Nice to have us all working together with my sis Sylvia Scruggs Colbert at the helm.

Among the photos, floppy disks, music tapes and other old school treasures we came upon this little bit of artwork I did in junior high or perhaps a bit earlier. Warm memories of childhood edged forward and I was touched that dear Dad kept it all these years.

It is made up of thousands of pieces of food color dyed rice-- meticulously placed by me with a toothpick and a dab of Elmer's glue. Whoah! I mean this required a lot of patience, geez! I still like working with teeny tiny bits. SMH.....

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Back on Blogger......

I have missed the blogger format for quite a I've decided to move back in!