I did a presentation on embellishing for this guild last night and all I can say is wow! What a great group! Maybe if I had found them first, I wouldn't have such an aversion to organized quilting guilds. Not to say that the original guild I joined is a bad one or anything, just not my cup o' tea, as the saying goes. At show and tell for the members there were mostly (practically all) traditional quilts shown. But the cool thing is, they seem very open to non-traditional work. So many groups seem to only be interested in what they are already doing. That sort of defeats the purpose of a group as far as I'm concerned. And historically, quilting is a group activity with all skill levels and strengths. (A huge nod to Shelly....no WAY could I slog through that, but by watching you, if I ever have to I can.) They had a good assortment of questions, and weren't scared to touch the stuff I passed around. I always like that, since I don't consider anything I do to be off-limits to handling. Why in the world would I intentionally choose to work in a tactile medium and then balk at people responding appropriately to it? I WANT them to touch it. Turn it over. Pick at it to see how it's done. Put their noses up close to get every last detail. Maybe take some idea away with them to use in their own work. The absolute worst response I can think of to my work would be disinterest. My skills in quilting, or binding width or fabric choices may not be to everyone's liking, but that's acceptable as long as I feel like it's interesting. That it draws people in closer for the detail.
I love what I do, and as I said last night I'd be doing it whether anyone ever saw it or not. Maybe that's why it's so easy for me to let go of the negative comments I do receive. I do it for myself, and so far have been fortunate that others receive it fairly well too. As always, my hope is to pass that excitement and curiosity for trying new things and simple passion for what I do along to others.