Monday, May 25, 2009

The effectiveness of old dye stock

I pulled out old dye stock and 2 strengths of thickener from the fridge and allowed them to come to room temperature over night for use last Friday the canvas.  Since I didn't feel like bothering with soda soaking I used Afterfix which goes on after the dye is completely dry.  The Afterfix is brushed on dries in about an hour.  It has to completely dry and then the fabric can be washed to remove the Afterfix and the dye remains.  

The dye and thickeners are 9 months old and have not been removed from the fridge since I put them in.  There is no odor to the thickener...seems like I remember reading in Complex Cloth that an amonia smell indicates the thickener is bad. 

I hand-washed the pieces in warm as my hand could stand it water with synthrapol.  I was satisfised with the results and plan to use the remaining dyes for dye-painting.  Here is what I painted today. 


The dye is still wet and will be good and dry when I return to paint on the Afterfix. 



I also tried ink-jet transfers using soft gel medium...the top was on a lighter background and the image was in gray scale.  The image directly above was in colour and the background fabric was darker and I'm thinking the values where too similiar resulting in the lost image.  While I was doing these samples it dawned on me to have my journals either dedicated to "transfers", "embroidery", for example, or either divide up a journal into sections so that I will not have to flip through journals to find (or most often, rediscover) previous samples.  What can I say?  Always slow but sure.

Memorial Day is starting out gray and wet...we are not trekking to the "country" cementary this year but I have fond memories of tradition of going with my Aunts and cousins.  For my mother's family, Memorial Day morphed into remembering the ancestors and not just those who served in the military.  I always used the time to collect family genealogy and stories which I entered into Family Tree Maker, a software program which has since been lost.  Even if I find the back up disc I'm not sure it would even open in the operating systems we have now.  I've thought about re-gathering, rebuilding the information but genealogy is much like quilting for me...enjoyably consuming in time and attention where anything else ceases to exist.  I loved the hunt involved in digging up records (of course much can be done online now) and oral interviews.  Even though I anticipated picking it back up, I don't think I can do it without stressing myself out which would take the pleasure from it.  I don't know if there are any young people in my family who are interested or not...its kinda entertaining to think of the 2nd (3rd?) wave hip-hop generation undertaking genealogy research.(what age demographic is that btw?  15-25).  I think of the first wave being my brother's age in their early 40's now.  The group that was weaned on it.  My 17 year old is writing a paper about the history of hip-hop.  He sees Rap as a sub-genre in Hip-Hop.   He has been struggling with the paper because I can't get it through is thick head that strong research paper goes beyond just citing historians and views of others but should at the heart be his own thoughts, ideas, and impressions of what he has learned, or what he thinks of the thoughts and ideas of others.  When we are talking about it, his self comes through, but he struggles with transfering his spoken words to paper.  At this point I've stopped bumping my head against the wall and I'm leaving him to his own devices and see what transpires between he and his teacher about it.   

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