Objets d’art?!? Some bad ink drawings…

I detest doing still life! Why draw objects when you can draw people? So this was one part of my Commercial Art assignments that ensured that I quit the course in a hurry!
You can possibly see my heart was not in this 😦

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Even the normally-generous-with-his-praise tutor had to tell me to improve my finishing!

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And here are some more stern remarks!

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Actually, I did not think this satin lehnga ( skirt) was so bad…here is a close up

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Did I mention these were done with a nib, which you dipped in a bottle of black India ink? You had to have excellent control over the amount of ink you ‘drew’ into the pen!
Done with great disinterest, for some odd reason, this crumpled sheet of paper found his approval :-p

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Here is a silver chain, which wasn’t bad, though the pendant was quite ordinary.

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Another hideous object!

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But there were a few still lifes I did which I like! I’ll share those in another post 🙂

Going dotty…

One of the first assignments in my Commercial Art Course was using dots to draw objects – not lines! ( I did only three lessons, and found that I’d had enough of being told what to draw)
Here are close ups of some of those drawings!
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And this was a shiny faux leather coin purse!

Let sleeping dogs lie…

These sketches were submitted as part of an assignment I did for a correspondence course in commercial art!

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These were of our beloved greyhound – the old gentleman was nearly 14 years old when these were done.
The next four sketches are of ‘The Doggess Who Wouldn’t Be’ – the most beautiful black Cocker Spaniel with a white throat and that tiny little tuft of white on the tip of her tail!
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Portraits and sketches

I discovered a bundle of sketches which had been packed away in a trunk, while we moved across the country on my husband’s postings! They are in a bad shape – so I thought I’d scan and preserve them before the brittle paper disintegrates totally!
This is sketch of my brother – I’ve always loved doing profiles! My school notebook would be full of profiles of classmates – mostly done in 10 to 15 minutes!

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And here is a pencil drawing of a mother with a baby, undated – probably 1978 or 1979. This is likely to have been copied from a magazine…

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I decided to teach myself to paint from a book – this is water colour wash – 1970 thereabouts!

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Here is another 10 minute sketch – of my mother in law while she meditated

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A higher point of view

I sketched the Moti Dungri (Pearl Hillock) fort some 25 years ago from the terrace of our single storeyed bungalow. The sketch is not dated, but I guess it must have been 1987 from the date on the preceding sketch in the notebook. It must have been a winter day – one would not be on the terrace otherwise! I had never used crayons to colour my sketches earlier – this was a precious Crayola set ( I remember the green and gold packaging) which my son had got as a present from his Aunt in Canada!

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Then Jaipur started growing vertically. Our neighbours on the West went up 4 storeys, and Moti Dungri was not visible any longer – not from the lounge window, nor from the terrace. Five years ago, we also decided to grow vertically and our beautiful house was taken down to be replaced by an ugly nine storeyed apartment block. One consolation – the Moti Dungri is visible to us again! Yesterday, as I sat with guests in the living room, I happened to glance out of the window and saw this!

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I made an excuse and ran to the terrace to capture the majestic fortress outlined by the rays of the setting sun.
The sun is actually setting a little to the left of the fort. The ipad camera could not capture the richness and brilliance of the sunset – here the colours have been enhanced to what I actually saw. This is how the camera saw it…

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Just takes 2 quilt top finished!

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The Just Takes 2 quilt top is done!
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The Just-Takes-2 quilt is designed by Gay from Sentimental Stitches and Brenda of Dear Jane. Head to justtakes2.com if you want to make your own quilt!

It finishes at 72″ X 90″ – it shall definitely need borders! And since I have run out of the grey printed background fabric, will have to make do with grey solid. Everything is going into cold storage now – I have a son getting married in exactly two months’ time 🙂
I must add a picture of what inspired the colours of my quilt – a sunset in the monsoons!

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An August evening in Jaipur with the monsoon clouds dispersing to reveal the setting sun …

Easy Peasy Circle Applique and Drunkard’s Path Quilt Blocks

The circle and the  Drunkards path ( a quarter circle place on one corner of a square) are two patches which send a shudder up any beginner quilter’s back!  I had to encounter both when working on the just takes 2 quilt – a 2012 mystery quilt along! There were plenty of circles -I was quite okay with those! But one of the blocks was the drunkard’s path which I kept putting off till the last – until I went back to the site today! Gay Bomers of Sentimental Stitchers has provided a brilliant tutorial to appliqué it instead of piecing it! She back- basted a circle to a square and cut it into 4 to yield four pieces of the block!
I loved that, but decided to make it even simpler…using the method I use to applique circles. There is nothing new about this – nothing that I have come up with! Learnt it long long ago, do not even remember from whom and when! Am sure many of you use this in any case, but for those new to sewing and piecing, it may be of help! So here goes!

How to appliqué perfect circles

You’ll need

Fabric (Squares) for the background

Smaller squares for the circles

Compass, pencil,  graph paper (optional)

Washable glue  or thread/ needle for tacking

Washable fabric marker pencil/ pen (optional – you could use a lead pencil – I do!)

1. Draw your circle (ready size) on paper. I like to use inch graph paper ( which I download from the web) , using one of the line crossings as a centre. Paste it on stiff card ( greeting cards are great) and cut out (without a seam allowance). This is your template.
2. The circle fabric needs to be a square approximately 1/2 to 3/4″ larger than the ready circle.
3. Using the card template, cut out circles from the circle fabric squares, adding a seam allowance of roughly 1/4″ all around. You need not be very accurate.
4. Increase your sewing machine stitch length to the max. Start with a long thread tail ( 4″ thereabouts)and sew about 1/8″ inside from the edge all around the circle. Again leave a long tail before snipping the thread. Prepare all your circles like this. I like to sew by hand, so I skipped the machine and did a running stitch all around! 🙂
5. Place your circle template on a   prepared fabric circle and pull the thread tails on the right side to gather the fabric on the template, like this!

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6. Tie the tails together and iron to set the edges. Gently remove the template. Prepare all the circles like this.
7. Now we get to work on the background squares! Place the template in the centre of the square on the right side. Some amount of accuracy is necessary here – it helps to fold the square and mark sharp creases near the edge.

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My template was on graph paper, so I could line it up accurately against the creases and centre the circle accurately.
8. Trace the circle on the background square, just a teenie weenie bit inside the template. Do this for all the squares.
9. Place your fabric circles on the background squares aligning them accurately on the pencil line. You can use washable school glue placing tiny dots of glue less than 1/4″ inside the circle.

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Or you could tack them in place by hand! Like the circle on the right below…

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10. Sew them in place using your favourite method. Machine them or – like I did- appliqué them by hand!

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So you have your perfect appliquéd circles in less than no time!

Drunkard’s Path
This is real fun! All you need is your rotary cutter and ruler! Cut the circle appliquéd blocks into quarters!

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Here are my 16 drunkard path patches, made from 4 appliquéd circle blocks!

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And here they are, as they will look in my final drunkard path block 🙂 all done in less than two hours!

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This was a finished 9″ block, but imagine how quickly a whole drunkards path quilt could come up, using lager circles and squares! You could trim the little background quarter circles from the back and use them in a border – making the drunkard path blocks the regular way.

Happy trip down the Drunkard’s Path! 🙂