Introduction: National Park Flags

I am applying for a National Park Artist Residency at Volcanoes National Park. A project proposal is required for the application. The project should involve the public at the National Park at least one day during the residency. I am asking your help to contribute to the data for my proposal. I want my project to be a community art project where everyone's piece of art contributes to the overall installation. The public would come to my workspace at the park and utilizing one of their own phone photos taken in the park, make a small fabric and paper flag approximately 8" by 6". These flags would be 2 sided - one side with a print out of their photograph the other side constructed on site with fabric, paper, glue, markers, stitching, thread, and other supplies. Then the fabric collage and the photograph would be stitched together with a small pocket space at the top. When all flags are constructed, rope will be threaded through the pocket and the strings of flags suspended in the visitor center or outside the visitor center. Whatever the park staff decides Upon returning home I would compile the photographs of everyone's piece of art into a self-published catalog. This catalog would be available to anyone to purchase online and the proceeds would be donated back to the National Park Art Foundation, the organization that sponsors the residency. In order to make a good proposal I need some flags made and some people to try out my directions. Here is the link to the directions for you to make one of these flags. This is to be a fairly quick project. Not counting the time it takes you to find and get your photograph printed out, the actual construction of the flag should only take between 30 and 45 minutes. Your approach should be simple and bold, not an exact replica of your photograph. If you don't want to do something representational you could do something abstract just based on the colors or the feeling that you got from being in that place. I would like you to use a photograph that you took at a National Park or National Monument or state park or other federal land. I need a bunch of flags so that I can put them all together on a rope and take a picture to include with my proposal. I will also ask you to send me a few photos of your work as it progresses. This project can be shared with anybody you know, done with your children or grandchildren, or other sewing/ crafting friends. Feel free to pass this on. The pictures of the flags that you produce will also be included in the catalog. During these unsettling and uncertain days, while we all have time on our hands I hope you will consider making me a little flag and mailing it to me.


Fabric, paper, photograph printed on paper, glue or glue stick, sewing machine (optional)

Step 1: Flag Directions

1.Choose a photograph you took in a National Park, or Monument, or State Park or National Forest. Choose a fairly simple uncluttered photograph.
2.Print it out and cut out a section that is 8" h x 6" w. ( If you don't have a color printer black-and-white is fine). 3.Cut a piece of white or light colored fabric 7 in. wide by 10.5 in. high. ( If you are not a sewer and don't have fabric you can use paper, glue, markers, crayons, etc.)

4.Use your photo as inspiration to construct your fabric or paper collage. Roughly sketch your design on the white fabric. Use large shapes, not too much detail. Freehand cut pieces of fabric and glue them with gluestick (school glue, fabric glue or fusible web) to your base fabric. Starting with the sky and background shapes and layer up to the foreground elements last. Iron over your glued collage to help set the glue.

5. When you are pleased with your collage, turn it upside down and lay your photograph right side up on the wrong side of the collage. Position the photograph towards the bottom of your collage with about a half of an inch showing all around 3 sides of the photograph. Use an iron to turn that half of an inch of fabric around the edge of your photograph. Fold the excess at the top down about an inch and iron that is well. Following the diagram stitch the edges down leaving a little open pocket at the top. If you don't have a sewing machine just glue it and after you send it to me I'll sew it.

6.Please use a Sharpie marker to write the name of your National Park or other area at the top in the sky. Please sign the bottom of your collage.

Please mail your flag . Include your name, address, and email.

Vicki Conley, PO Box 437, Ruidoso Downs, NM 88346. Please email me with any questions.