Circles, Stars, Bombs and Flowers – for Jen

Is it weird to create a fabric in honour of a friend who passed away? Fuck it, I’m doing it.

Jen was a friend of mine at university — many years ago — who died when she was only about 22 years old. She was a poet who wrote a compendium of poetry called Circles, Stars, Bombs, and Flowers. I think that’s such a lyrical title and it has stuck in my head over all those years.

So I screenprinted some fabric using that title as inspiration. You can also read a bit more about what inspired this in my previous post.  I intend to make a fitted t-shirt out of it that will remind me of Jen when I wear it.  Here’s how it came together:

Silk screen layer #1: circles and stars in lilac

Silk screen layer #1: circles and stars in lilac.

Silk screen layer #2: peach circles.

Silk screen layer #2: peach circles.

Silk screen layer #3: light pink flowers

Silk screen layer #3: light pink flowers.

Cutting the flower motif out of mac-tac...in my 'outdoor studio'

Cutting the flower motif out of mac-tac…in my ‘outdoor studio’

Blending the ink

God I love mixing ink! Watching the colours blend is happiness-inducing.

The finished fabric, after layers 4 & 5 (gold bombs and purplish-grey circles).

The finished fabric, after layers 4 & 5 (gold bombs and purplish-grey circles).

My cat was kind enough to photobomb the picture to give a better sense of the scale of the pattern. Now it's covered in black cat hair. :|

My cat was kind enough to photobomb the picture to give a better sense of the scale of the pattern. Now it’s covered in black cat hair. :/

FYI, in case you’re thinking of trying silk screening yourself, I used a screen printing kit by Speedball that I got from a local art supply shop. It was a very reasonable price and did the trick well. It’s a very easy process, but I am glad that I took a short course on screen printing before I tried this…the kit came with instructions but I think I might have screwed up a bit if I had just gone by those, especially the part about setting up the silk screen frame, where you have to block out the edges with tape or by some other method. Glad I was shown what to do by a pro at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO). If you’re in Toronto, the Make Den has screenprinting classes (in addition to their sewing classes) and as of today, July 24, 2013, there’s a Groupon available for their sewing & screenprinting classes for more than half off. Wish I’d seen that before I signed up for the AGO classes!

Advertisements

What do you think? Leave a comment.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s