Thursday, August 28, 2008

"The Storm"

It's been a week of unbelievable tragedy and crisis for someone I love very much, so my posting and working has suffered. I've done some mindless piecing on a quilt sort of loosely based on one I saw earlier in the week (thanks Rosemary!) that was loosely based on one she saw in a magazine. It is morphing from what I started with to something a little more involved, but the base idea is still there.

The only piece I have actually finished this week is the one I did for the Breaking Traditions show. It's another Katrina piece using some more of my debris, and it was another one that was hard to work through. The storm pieces are getting easier, but still not (maybe never) easy. And now we're all on edge with Gus wandering around. This piece is 12"x12" and constructed on a commercial print cotton base using blue tarp, a scrap of Army fatigue, reverse appliqued Red Cross, scraps and bits and orts of MRE packaging, nails, a chunk of roofing, and a bunch of other stuff. A paint-covered screwdriver, a beaded cross, and some Mardi Gras doubloons from the 70s. Between working on this piece, the personal crisis and the nerves from Gus, I'm about wiped out emotionally this week.
OK, enough whining and on to the picture!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

We're gonna give it a shot

Me and my big ideas! We're getting an on-line art quilt crit group together. So far, we have 7 people participating, and once the fog clears from my brain I'll be putting together the "official" guidelines and rules. Right now, I'm just sending out links to existing crit forms and info so everyone will have an idea of the direction we're trying to go. I'm actually sort of looking forward to it too. I've discovered that I can learn as much about my own work by analyzing other people's as I do by analyzing my own. It's almost easier to define and verbalize the elements of someone else's quilt. Maybe I just "know" in my head how I want to do something without having to put much more thought into it than "it looks better at the bottom than it does at the side" when I'm working on my own stuff. Looking at someone else's, I have to decide specifically WHY it looks better at the bottom and be able to put that into words.

Concentrating on the art aspect can only help and it's never a bad thing to be able to get some insight into how others perceive your strengths and weaknesses in design, color, etc.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

A post!

Not an important one, or an informative one, and probably not even an interesting one. But a post nonetheless, which is more than I can claim from the last 2 weeks or so. Deadlines for three really big things that have all fallen at the same time. 2 show submissions with the gobs of inherent paperwork, and a newsletter deadline with a bunch of information and phone calls back and forth and emails flying to get complete and accurate info.

Both show submissions are going out today, then a couple of quilts to finish up for one of the shows and I'll get a break. I think. At least the kids are all back at school so I have the time for my own work. Having the energy and motivation is a different story.

My oldest daughter started her practice teaching yesterday to finish her degree to be a high school English teacher and she is SOOO excited. She's assigned to a school less than 2 blocks from her apartment so she plans to walk as often as possible. Her original assignment was 41 miles away and we were sweating the gas costs for an entire semester of that commute. She's thrilled with the teacher she's assigned to, and she has only Jrs and Srs and at least one AP class to work with. She's in hog heaven and can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel! We're incredibly proud of her.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Good vibrations

I sort of had a lapse there with the chronological steps on this one. It's ready for quilting now though. I added some notes, a black and white flange between the background and the narrow black inner border, and then finished off with a wider print border. The outside border is the same fabric as what's behind the notes, and the colors were perfect with the hand painted background, although I painted the background over a year ago and the fabric was a gift last month. Worked perfectly though. Not sure yet what the quilting pattern is going to be but I'm leaning towards some big sweeping curves sort of echoing the lines of the staff and the keyboard.

Friday, August 01, 2008

the Satchmo piece

It didn't even occur to me to re-post the Satchmo piece that was in the show! This is "Primarily Jazz" and it's 35"x35", hand painted and commercial cottons, pieced, appliqued and thread painted.

Satchmo art show

The reception was great! Wall to wall people, open bar upstairs and 3 buffet tables of food. The only glitch was the fact that, because of the lay out of the exhibit, it was hard to hang out by my piece to eavesdrop on the viewers and there was no way to identify the artists from the visitors. I did pass out a bunch of cards and talked to a few people and just enjoyed the experience of being in an art show in New Orleans. The president of the City Council (her name escapes me, unfortunately) spoke, and we were all given fancy certificates signed by the Mayor. They were worded strangely and it sort of looked like the kind of thing politicians do so they look like they're doing something, but at least they went to the trouble of doing it. I'll stick it up on my wall with the ribbons from local shows and call it a souvenir, although I actually like the poster better. It was pretty cool to see my name on the list of artists though. No prize, but I didn't expect one. I was just happy my work was accepted for the show to begin with, considering the caliber of the local artists. The 46 pieces of art are on exhibit until September 1.

I didn't realize until the speech that this is the first year back since the storm, and the 25th anniversary of the Satchmo art show, so maybe it's an even bigger deal than I thought it was. At any rate, I'm happy and proud and excited to have been included in it.