A TECHNIQUE DRIVEN Blog dedicated to mastery of surface design techniques. First we dye, overdye, paint, stitch, resist, tie, fold, silk screen, stamp, thermofax, batik, bejewel, stretch, shrink, sprinkle, Smooch, fuse, slice, dice, AND then we set it on fire using a variety of heat tools.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Another Line Added to the First Experiment

I wanted to add another line to the daylily drawing but I knew I was really bad at using the syringe to draw lines.  So first I practiced drawing with the thickened dye.

Still not great but getting better.  I learned that whether I am putting pressure on the plunger or not, the thickened dye will ooze out.  So I started using a drip rag to wipe the tip of the syringe between drawing with it.  That helped.  I also tried starting off the edge of the fabric so the blob would be somewhere else.  That also helped but it is not always a choice.  I was not particularly pleased with the quality of the line.  Too thin for the emphasis I wanted to give the flower.  Now the syringe I was using is the kind of syringe with the really tiny curved tip.  I might have gotten better results with a syringe with a larger opening--like a syringe for giving children their liquid medicine.  But I think I may be done using a fine tipped syringe.

Here is the daylily painting with the added dark line. I do like it better.  Not perfect but better. And here are some detail pictures.

You know, putting much more emphasis on the flower even makes the more impressionistic background look a little better.  However, the black lines in the background should just disappear. What a mistake! They only emphasis the stems and leaves going no where.  Didn't need/want that level of clarity for the background.



  1. I just remembered something! I have used fabric paints in little squeeze bottles to paint lines with success... wonder how the squeeze bottles (with applicator tip) would work using thickened dyes? I had pretty good control making even lines, and you can leave the tip tiny or cut a little larger.

  2. I like the thin black line around the flowers. Takes experimenting! I'd be tempted to use black thread and sew it. I do like the fabric though.

  3. I took some classes with Claire Benn & Leslie Morgan a few years back. I experimented with syringe drawing and found it to be difficult and blobby. I switched to the very fine tip 2 oz squeeze bottle. It was so much easier to control that it wasn't even funny. It's not that I had a problem with syringes, hey . . .I'm a retired RN and have much experience with controlling flow. I guess it's the nature of the beast. I do like your idea of starting off the fabric to begin and end lines. I think that would be helpful no matter which technique is used. BTW, I love this lily!

  4. I'm not sure why you would mess with this when there are so many archival pens and markers as well as acrylic inks and pens to use them in out there that are specifically made for such things.

  5. I use the small bottles wih nibs made for gutta resists to fill with thickened dyes and draw with. They work extremely well. I do like using the syringes as well but have found that the dye has to be at a perfect consistently to avoid those blobs.

  6. My belated comment to tell you how much I LOVE those lines with the syringe! The "topo map" look is wonderful, and I want to work with this technique for piece that has been rolling around in my head for awhile. The comments from other readers are very helpful too. The blobbing that seems unavoidable with syringe can be just right. More experiments on my blog with this. But I think I'll get a fine tipped squeeze bottle for when I want more control.


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