The Animal Collage Project
I belong to the Modern Quilt Guild of NWA. Our Prez brings us a challenge every few months. Our latest challenge, due in February, is to make an animal quilt using collage. The animal can be real, imagined, a pet, whatever we choose. The hardest part for me was deciding what kind of animal to portray and suddenly I was inspired by a childhood memory: the ballerina hippos in Walt Disney’s “Fantasia.” I looked to see if the hippos actually had names and lo and behold, the main hippo is Hyacinth. So Hyacinth is going have the night off from dancing. I decided on an approximate size of 18-inches square and made a sketch. Then I stapled a piece of woven, non-fusible interfacing to the sketch as a guide. I want the facial features to stand out somewhat so started working on those.
Friends in my art quilt group have talked about using Steam-A-Seam 2 for applique projects. I had a sample but was never impressed because it had lost it’s stickiness. This is how it works. The fusible has two papers, one which is easily removed, the other which you need to peel off. Always follow the manufacturer’s directions but basically remove one paper, smooth the fusible onto the wrong side of the fabric, give it a quick press.
Cut out your shape, remove the other paper, and put it in place. The beauty of this product is that you can remove the shape and reposition it on your project until you iron it in place. So far I have not ironed anything down. Here are the beginnings of the eye detail. Since hippos are wrinkly, I cut a log of crescent shapes in the under eye (light) area, as well as the pupil.
Sometimes you can use parts of a fabric for details–I used this fabric for the nostrils.
Before adding larger pieces to finish the body, I wanted to emphasize the facial features so pulled out some gradated greys for shading, adding some purple line details.
And here we are so far. Stay tuned for more progress photos. I have not removed the second paper from the purple line on the face as it is easier to add the lines after placing background pieces.
I’ve already got some ideas for grass, water and sky and, of course, Hyacinth’s tutu. Have a great weekend.