Barbara I. - Part 2

Lesson Three: Exercise 2

This week I have been moved and distracted by the death of noted quilt artist, Yvonne Porcella. I used a couple of Yvonne’s quilts as examples for Exercise 1, but I wanted to go further and try to emulate her portrait technique. The C&T Publishing website posted a lovely picture of Yvonne, which I used as a model for my work. I scanned the picture into Photoshop and created a sketch. From that I outlined shapes on fusible web and selected bright fabrics from my stash with attention to Yvonne’s use of polka dots, checks, and black & white prints.

I first printed (on fabric) a muted image of one of Yvonne’s most famous quilts, “Keep Both Feet on the Floor,” which is the background of my portrait. It was selected for a collection called, “The Twentieth Century’s Best American Quilts, Celebrating 100 Years of the Art of Quiltmaking,” 1999, Primedia Special Interest Publications, Golden, CO.  Only one hundred quilts were honored in this collection.

I wanted to use Yvonne’s glasses as my focal point. In an effort to save time, I fudged the satin stich outlining by scanning my fabric collage into Photoshop and using the brush tool to emphasize the central placement of the glasses and the use of brightly checked fabric as lenses contrasting with the black and white glasses frames. I also used an element in the hat, again outlining the abstract leaves and emphasizing “veins” that point toward the glasses.

If you are not familiar with Yvonne’s work, you can go to her website and review her gallery. http://www.yvonneporcella.com/

Yvonne had an incredible career as an artist, author, teacher, and enthusiastic community member. She will be missed.