St. Augustine, Florida

Full egret quiltWhat makes St. Augustine, Florida so special?  Besides being the oldest continuously occupied (European-established) city in the United States -1565 (look it up!  It is not Jamestown or Plymouth), it is a place of natural beauty and history.  I love St. Augustine.  My father went there as a young boy, and then returned with his wife and small family.  As the family grew, we visited so often that 25 years ago my folksall three kids bought a summer home on Anastasia Island.  Now retired, they have adopted Florida as their home state – and St. Augustine as their hometown.  From the Castillo de St. Marcos to the Cathedral and St. George Street – all the sites of the city are like a homecoming for me.  Terry and I honeymooned there 🙂 and have returned time and again with the kids.

lighthouse photoA few weeks ago I found out about a call for artists from the St. Augustine Art Association – A Nature and Wildlife Art Exhibition. I was so excited! We visited last summer and I knew just the pictures I would use.  We went to the lighthouse, which is located on Anastasia Island.  If you ever visit St. Augustine, this is a must on your itinerary – although if you are afraid of heights (as I am) you may want to skip the trip up to the top.  In fact, the Ghost Hunters (SYFY channel) documented ghostly activity there that will leave you all goose-bumpy 🙂

I chose a shot that I had taken looking up through the tree branches and Spanish moss at the lighthouse.  This speaks to everything I love about St. Augustine – the nature and the history.

Quilt

close up of lighthouse

You’d think aligning the lines of the iron work around the top of the lighthouse would be the most difficult part of this piece but it was the Spanish moss.  I used a technique I recently learned from an art quilters group I joined to add the embroidery floss and felting to make up the moss.  It was time-consuming, but lots of fun 🙂 Click on the close up of the lighthouse top and you will see the detail there – it is pretty cool (if I do say so myself! 😉 )

The second piece I made can viewed at the top, with a detail down below.  It’s an egret (an egret can also be seen in the branches of the lighthouse tree).  I love how they are so white they are almost translucent.  I tried to show this by layering my fabric – first a light blue, than a plain white, then one with a pattern. And finally the stitching to bring out the feathers.Quilted Egret upclose

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I have always loved the process of transforming pieces of fabric into quilts. For years I collected scraps, just to be sure I'd have the right piece for the project at hand. Eventually, as my skills progressed, my hobby grew into art. I moved from simple quits, to 'landscape quilting' and then eventually onto portrait work. I am new to the art field and am self-taught, learning from my mistakes as well as from my successes. I create my images using only fabric and thread. I remain true to this limitation for two reasons; first, I love the challenge of finding new ways to depict ever more challenging subjects. Second, fabric work remains my true love. I enjoy the hunt for fabrics; where other artists might blend oil paints, I love finding that perfect shade or pattern for a specific need. I refer to my style as "gestalt impressionism" for one needs to take a step back from my pieces to get the whole picture. My view point changes by what is influencing me at the time. Recently I've begun to focus on the journey of the individual. I enjoy working on portraits of people whom I feel have lead interesting lives.

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Posted in Art Quilts
5 comments on “St. Augustine, Florida
  1. I enjoyed your post and beautiful work. Egret is beautiful!

  2. Terry says:

    I have to get you a better camera! These are even better in person…

  3. Boudicca says:

    Creativity in any form touches me very deeply. This, however, is explosive – I am so glad that you’re my niece and I get to see the things you create! What a Privilege!! ❤

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