Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Pears on my mind

I have been gathering pear images into my Picasa folders lately and I feel as though there may be a pear quilt appearing on my horizons shortly. These two paintings by Sylvia Megerdichian, are so wonderful. I think the one above is done with pastels.

This one could be mixed media, underpainted and then drawn into with pastels or colored pencils. It's hard to tell when you can't see the original.
One of you asked nicely if I could write about how I go about making a quilt. Like where I get my ideas or inspirations and then what steps do I take to get to the quilt-making parts.
This is so varied an experience that I have to say, I can't really explain it. But at the moment I am looking at these shapes and colors and thinking about them in a quilting direction. I would much rather make non-objective work, but there are times when just a shape can move me to start sketching and that leads to an image that I can use to build a design.
There is no substitute for the drawing part. If you think you cannot draw, think: diagram, or think: indication, or think: scribble.
I usually use my sketchbook, and a pencil and just begin by loosening up. Big round light gestural marks are made and then refined and soon a deeper more intentional line is made. If you saw my sketches you would see that they look totally blurry and indistinguishable, so I may take a piece of tracing paper and just trace the parts that I want, and go from there.

The tracings also allow me to rearrange the shapes to my liking, or to enlarge or diminish the sizes of certain details, tilting or flipping shapes to decide on placement.


Autumn Fruits lifted from Yarnstorms a knitblog I read. She's a great visual artist and knitter.


These look like pears but are quince. I haven't ever seen a quince in person.

I am not interested in making a realistic, representational image for a quilt. If I wanted to do that I would make a painting or finished drawing. I know that it is currently popular to do very realistic pictorials, but for me, that is just an exercise in technique. (here's where I get in trouble) When I became a quilter I wanted to have another form of expression, one where the design was paramount, and there needn't be a recognizable image.

If I can paint it so you recognize it, then I needn't make a quilt that does the same thing.

It's not the image, it's the inspiration that image gives me, what it can lead to design-wise. I don't think I can teach how that is done. If I could, I definitely would, but it is a mystery even to me.

It may be the only thing I have internally that is unique to me.

4 comments:

  1. I can't wait to see this one. I like the idea... sounds delicious! Oh, no, scuse me, that's apples, not pears.

    I love Yarnstorms.. I will have to go back later when I have more time.

    ReplyDelete
  2. If quince is what I think it is, it turns yellow while ripening and feels hairier than pears. It's also more intense and tart in taste. My mum makes a sort of marmelade from it that then gets spread onto plates, air-dried and sliced into diamond shapes. It's great energy food. My gran used to have a quince (see disclaimer ;-) tree. It's quite a rare and traditional fruit. And the tree looked just the part, old and scragly.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I agree with you about the pictoral quilts. They are fun to look at and the techniques used are quite interesting, but I prefer something more abstract (loooove the tulips) in the world of quilts.

    My friend Helen had a quince tree in the garden of her old house. I think I must have seen it in November when the fruit was quite yellow and the tree very old and scragly. I think you can get them in the US now, but they're a lot more common in Britain.

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Hello,
So nice of you to drop by. I love your comments, and if you would really like a reply, please email me at fibermania at g mail dot com