26 June 2013

New VP9 Challenge: Preconceptions

The Challenge: "Have you ever had a situation about which you formed an opinion that was later disproved? … What was it like? How did it feel? I invite you to consider one of your past preconceptions and depict your experience in an art quilt."

This challenge stumped me.  Even though I had a couple scenarios and memories to draw from, I could not imagine a way to put them into a visual design.  So instead, I decided to use the process of making this quilt to challenge my own perceptions.

I'm a planner.  Especially in the studio.  I never cut fabric or start sewing until I have a vision of what the completed piece will look like. (or at least what I hope it will look like).

This month's challenge, for me: create a quilt in such a way that I'd have NO IDEA what it would look like when finished. The result would a surprise to me, and maybe the viewer too.

So how did I end up with this?  Read more about my thought process and see more artists' responses to the eighth Viewpoints 9 creative challenge:

2013June 018

09 June 2013

Finished: New Work, “Dogwood II”

2013-06-07 01.43.50

Here she is.  I’m happy to report Dogwood II (finished size 20”H x 38”W) is headed across the country to its new owner.  This one, along with Magnolias III (summer is the time for sequels), satisfy my self imposed May 30th’s deadline.  I’m counting them as one major work, since they are at least 36” x 36” put together.

Dogwood was inspired by one of the trees in my front yard, which happens to be in bloom these past few weeks.  The quilt is made with hand dyed and batik fabric, as well as a few layers of plain white for the flowers.  Details were added with free motion stitching.  I used a variegated brown-gray-black thread for the branches.

2013-06-07 01.39.15

So what’s next on the design board?  I should go back to the “Then and Now” challenge and finish those tulips.  But all these flowers lately, I’m kinda longing for another city scene!

Just in time, City Quilter just announced a design challenge based on Grand Central Terminal.  Deadline is August 21, 2013.  Hmmm.  That would coincide nicely with my next major deadline.  But then again, I still have this tattoo theme running in the back of my mind.

So many ideas, so little time…!

04 June 2013

Work in Progress: "Dogwood II" (unquilted)


So here we have "Dogwood II" assembled with fabric, unquilted.  This is not the best photo; just a quick pic with my phone.  It's a bit darker than the real quilt, but it's enough for my purposes right now.  I'm taking an "eyeball" break, before moving onto the detail stitching. 

Often at this stage, I put the piece up on the design board and take a photo of so I can see the image on a small screen.  (A trick for artists who don't have a large studio or workspace.  Seeing it smaller kinda fools your eye into thinking you're seeing the piece from a distance). This helps me decide if the overall composition is working and running on all cylinders (color, visual balance, contrast, movement etc).  If anything needs to be changed, it's better to see it now rather than after everything is sewn down.

When I'm done with all the quilting, I'll square up the edges and probably crop it a bit more.  I'll share a better quality photo once Dogwood II is complete and approved by it's new owner.

Thanks for visiting! :-)