Rusting Away 12 X 12′s

Here is a series I worked on a few months back, the Rusting Away Series.  They came after the little sample sketches I showed here previously. I really like the layering of materials and techniques, adding paper and paint in addition to fabric and leaving batting edges showing.  I also like sense of not knowing where the piece is going at the beginning.


I donated #1 to the SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) Benefit Auction, but the other two are still available.



Rusting Away #1

Rusting Away #1




Rusting Away #2

Rusting Away #2



Rusting Away #3

Rusting Away #3



Posted in Recent Work, Techniques

The Thin Red Line to appear in Artist As Quiltmaker XVIII

I am pleased to be apart of the exhibit Artist As Quiltmaker XVIII, presented by the Firelands Association For The Visual Arts, Oberlin, Ohio from May 13–July 29, 2018.

The Thin Red Line: Diagonal series

The Thin Red Line: Diagonal series




detail view

detail view



Here are a few studio views which show the design and construction process of this quilt.  The strips were cut diagonally on the 16″ x 36″ prints of color enhanced photos taken of boat reflections in the water, a picture taken at the locks in Seattle on one of our opera trips. I really love how the water ripples look like shibori produced resist stripes, when cut into strips and robbed of their material reality.



The strips were then arranged for the desired effect before the fusing to the background fabric and quilt sandwich.

Under Construction, whole print on right

Under Construction, whole print sections on right


Under design and construction before fusing

Under design and construction before fusing


Posted in Recent Work

Interesting Photographs









Posted in Inspiration photos

Small mixed media collages with stitch







I’ve been playing with mixed media collage on small 6″ x 6″ squares–using leftover prints, painted papers, paint, and stitchery. The goal is to practice loosening up, to develop ideas for a new series in larger quilts, while having the freedom to “try anything” because it is only 6″ and is using primarily leftovers.  It is also a good place to learn whether techniques work or not, as with painted deli papers applied over fused fabric scraps.  

I love the freedom when doing improvisational paper collage and I want to transfer the freedom and enthusiasm to my larger works.  I like the layering approach, as well, as a way of working.


Here  are several examples of this Rust Series:


RustSeries5RustSeries4 RustSeries3 RustSeries2 RustSeries1

Posted in Recent Work, Techniques

New Quilt Series

Here are some of the prints of digital designs going into my current work in progress.


water print 1




water print2

I am digitally layering in subtle background grid images from paper collages with the water ripples and grasses imagery. 


water print3




I am doing a lot of paper collage study work with prints on Epson matte paper which means I can see how the various prints look when cut into pieces and rearranged with each other.  


collage study 1

collage study 1

Collage study 2


Collage Study

 Stay tuned to see the quilts appear.

Posted in Art in nature, Inspiration photos, Recent Work

Improv Collage









I’m taking an online Improvisational Collage class from Kara Kramer. Here are some of the 3 minute collages done on 4 x 6 cards.  They have different parameters set: all angles, or all organic shapes, monochromatic, etc. 

I’m looking for ways to be freer with my digital fabric collage/quilt compositions, so I’m using photos and digital alterations in these as well.  I really like the torn paper edges, but they are not possible with fabric–unless I photograph them?

We’ll see where it goes.









Posted in Inspiration photos, Recent Work

Carnival to open at Visions Art Museum October 21, 2017

I am again proud to have my work appear with 36 other wonderful quilt artists at the Interpretations: Conversations show at the Visions Art Museum in San Diego, California. The show runs from October 21 through January 7, 2018.

This quilt is part of my Diagonal Thoughts Series in which I am exploring the shibori-like stripes made from water ripple photos.  I am treating them like surface designed fabrics which I cut in strips and rearrange in various ways.

Carnival  59" x 29" 2016

Carnival 59″ x 29″ 2016


Here is my Artist Statement:

The “natural stripes” created by the digital intensifying of photos of ripple lines in the water has been used to create fluid meandering shapes and juxtapositions. The created imagery suggests the wateriness of the original source even while creating another imagery reminiscent of the excitement of summertime, carnival and circus tents, and sudden summer downpours causing changes in human plans.


Some detail images:

Detail 1

Detail 1



Detail 2

Detail 2


Carnival Under Construction

Carnival Under Construction On the Design Wall



The last image shows 4 of the prints I used before I started cutting and the strips of paper I used to envision the diagonal stripes.

Image Prints Before Cutting on the Diagonal

Image Prints Before Cutting on the Diagonal


Posted in Art in nature, Recent Work, Techniques

“Purple Rain” to appear at the Dairy Art Center in Boulder, Colorado

Purple Rain  59" x 29"

Purple Rain 59″ x 29″

Purple Rain, one of my newest quilts, is being exhibited at 75: New Art Quilts at the Dairy Arts Center in Boulder, Colorado.  Judith Trager is the featured artist with 40 of her art colleagues in a display of all new work.  

Here is a detail view:



And here are some in progress shots:

CuttingStripsForPurpleRain InProceesPurpleRain


You can see one of the silk prints from which the diagonal stripes were cut, as well as how I began arranging them on the design wall. They have the fusing and paper on them to help keep them stiff and keep them from fraying excessively.

The name does not really come from the song, but is more a reference to water and wetness as well as the dominant hue. I use the water photos for their stripe variety as well as their water image content. The watery quality of the original photos of water reflections from piers comes through even with the colors drastically changed to this exciting and dynamic color scheme.

I have done several pieces in this series, playing with diagonally cut strips making chevrons and diamonds and repeated stripings……   And playing with color placement…….The result is an abstract formal composition, yet adding in some randomness of placement and keeping away from absolute symmetry. I really like straying away from the symmetry that keeps trying to reappear.

Posted in Gallery 1, Recent Work, Techniques

Digital design thoughts and explorations


Have been playing around with digital designs and searching for my next quilt idea to carry out in actual fabric. Many considerations feed into this decision:

What will look dramatic as an overall image? What would be unusual and not done before?

What size and format?

Are the prints able to be printed so they are not pixelated at a large size?  Whole cloth appearance or lots of small fused applique pieces?

What other techniques will I use?….do I have an itch to try?  Do I want to add paint or exposed batting?

How will I stitch it to enhance the concept?

What concept and image speaks to me right now?  What color scheme will I love?

What is a next step? What will stretch me a bit?

 Should I continue an already started series?….or begin a new one?


Should I revive and materialize an older design?  ……like these two that have been waiting in the wings to be used.

P1000087plus bear creek painting

Looks like watered silk




Repeated reflections of people and their clothing in a river


Or should I go with some newer design ideas like this one:

Russian River Reeds

Russian River Reeds

or this one:

Colorful Forest

Colorful Forest

Os some newly worked on but older ideas?

Dark Mists

Dark Mists



Forest Secrets

Forest Secrets

Lots of things to consider before I make the final selection.


Posted in Art in nature, Inspiration photos

Visions Art Museum to feature recent work by Charlotte Ziebarth

Shifting Winds

Shifting Winds


Earth Wind Water   featuring recent work by me opens April 18 and runs through July 2, 2017 at the Visions Art Museum in San Diego.



 The above pictured, Shifting Winds, is part of my current exploration involving the use of cut strips of silk prints as digital surface design.  By layering these strips of imagery in ways different from the original digital painting I can create a new landscape impression.  Rather than relying on the digitally altered photograph for the composition, I use a collage technique to enjoy a more spontaneous approach to art making and quilt design.  It allows for repetitions and serendipitous happenings and sometimes unplanned juxtapositions. Although cut up and rearranged, the qualities of the original do come through to convey wateriness, waves, or sand ripples.

Detail views:


Detail of Shifting Winds



Stitching Shifting Winds




Written on the Waves

Written on the Waves



Written on the Waves and Written in the Sand are smaller versions using this collage technique with my digital surface designed fabrics. Cut narrower and narrower I am inspired by the textures and lines that appear in the photos of reflected water images, as well as the line drawing quality of images of tree branches and corrugated tin roofs. A landscape-like composition emerged in each of these spontaneous compositions.




Written in the Sand



Sometimes the compositions of the original photograph inspire me to make a “whole cloth quilt” such as Reflecting #34,  In this quilt the stitching is the drawing on top of the photo of the sun on the water, emphasizing or adding to the lines in the cropped and digitally colored photo.


Reflecting #34

Reflecting #34


stitching detail of Reflecting #34

stitching detail of Reflecting #34


All quilts use my digital art which is derived from my photographs, printed on prepared silk charmeuse, cut and fused, and stitched with rayon and cotton threads. All quilts are sprayed with UV filtered acrylic spray varnish for added protection.










Posted in Art in nature, Recent Work