The Five Elements - value, color, texture, shape and line

Posted by Elizabeth Barton on 2 March 2015 | 0 Comments


There are only five elements or variables that artists have to arrange in a two dimensional composition. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? But look at all the millions of quilts, pictures, weavings and graffiti that have been made from just those five things: value, color, texture, shape and line.

cityofmists elizabeth barton

City of Mists - lesson on value

In my Dyeing to Design class, we are going to address these elements from the dyer’s point of view. How can we dye the values, colors, textures, shapes and lines we want for our quilts? Having created these luscious fabrics, how best to use them within the quilt?

Each week, we will focus on a different element and how to achieve it with dye on white cotton. I will give you complete instructions. Then we will design and make a small quilt focusing on that element and on the best ways to use that particular kind of fabric.

We will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of each kind of surface design with particular reference to designing art quilts. We will look at several examples of good use of that kind of fabric. Then I will give specific parameters to follow in designing for that week’s quilt. You can upload as many potential designs as you wish for questions, critique if desired and discussion so that we can all learn from each other.

.... Elizabeth Barton

About Dyeing to Design: Creating your own fabrics is an enticing prospect, but they can be hard to use. Let Elizabeth help you solve that mystery. Each lesson is divided into two sections: dyeing and designing. You will learn to think about what the fabric wants and design your quilt to use your dyed fabrics to their best advantage. Elizabeth will show you her method for dyeing values, gradated colors and arashi shibori. She will then teach you to thicken your dye and use it for silk screening and other painterly applications. Read more...

quilting classes available at the Academy of Quilting

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