It is my absolute pleasure today to introduce you to an amazing quilt artist, tutor, and author of “Step by step portrait art quilts: Learn to Create Realistic Portrait and Pictorial Quilts”, Margaret Bucklew.
On this, the second day of Margaret’s book blog tour, she will be introducing you to some ideas on selecting the best photographs for your art quilts. So I’ll hand on over to this amazing artist and meet up with you again at the end to tell you about her wonderful giveaway!
Which photo will work for a portrait quilt?
Now that you’ve decided to take the plunge and make a portrait quilt, how do you know which photograph will work best for the technique?
Below are a few tips for you to consider when deciding upon the most appropriate photo.
* Don’t use a 6”x4” photograph if a person’s head is smaller than completely filling up that area.
* Use the largest image possible, it’s best if the head is at least 4 inches big in the photo
* Colour and/or black and white are ok
* Look for high contrast images
* Pets work great for this technique, face needs to be large to see features (you can’t improve on black areas of the eyes, if that’s an issue select a different photo)
* It’s ok if you don’t use the entire head
* If image is too dark, look for different photo
* Don’t use photo of two people as your first portrait quilt
You will want to work with the photograph a bit before you separate it into values, so you do have a window of opportunity to make some changes prior to the separations.
If the photo you want to use is flat, meaning not much contrast, you can work with the software to increase contrast overall, or even heighten contrast within certain areas of the image.
You can change the size a bit, but not too much because the software is pixel based and when you enlarge the computer then has to decide where to put the extra pixels. The computer might work faster than you, but it is not smarter than you! It doesn’t always pick the best colours to add.
The image above is the photo that one of my creative students, Meleah Westnidge, used for a portrait quilt of her grandmother. Her beautiful completed quilt is the image on the right. Meleah’s photograph selection was large enough to allow for her grandmother’s features to be fully executed.
We cover this and more in the first chapter of our “Step by Step Portrait Art Quilts: Learn to Create Realistic Portrait and Pictorial Quilts”. The book is both in print or eBook. The book can be purchased and more information found on Amazon, here. An eBook version is also available on Kobo, here.
For a few more tips, please visit the next blogs in the book tour:
Day One 11 March All about Applique
Day Two 12 March SEW Useful Designs
Day Three 13 March A Passion for Applique
Day Four 14 March Jackie’s Art Quilts
Day Five 15 March Quilting and Sewing Videos
Thank you so much Margaret for sharing your tips with us today! Thank you also for offering one copy of your new eBook to one of my lucky readers! It has been a real pleasure getting to know you.
So – to all you lovely people out there reading my blog – would you like the opportunity to win a copy of Margaret’s eBook? All you need to do is leave ONE comment on this post to enter. I will select a winner by random generator one week from today on Tuesday 19 March, 7pm Melbourne time. Good luck!
I don’t know about you – but I’m going to be viewing my photographs with a different eye from now on – in anticipation of selecting the perfect portrait of my children to make in to an art quilt. One for each of them. I can’t wait to get stuck in to searching for the right fabrics in my scrap basket!
Till next time – have a wonderful day! And don’t forget to enter the giveaway!!!!!