Friday, January 13, 2006

Cruciform Series #3: The Dance


The Dance

Hand dyed cottons, fused, 60x62"

Remember this sketch? I constructed the figures first and then found them to be too floppy to continually put up on the wall and then take down to add more parts, so I did something different for me. I fused them to batting. I left all the edges un-fused so that I could slip the proceeding piece under the previous layer, and continued to build the design on the batting. This meant: NO screwing up. Once a piece is fused, it pretty much has to stay put or if it has to go, it becomes useless and gets tossed. Luckily the rest of the design didn't require many tiny pieces.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Here you can see the batting on the lower half. After I built the figures, the cape and the sky I was at loss as to how I would finish off the bottom part.That's when I went to the Answer book and found this solution.

Well it made sense to me. I felt the familiarity of the bottom arc and remembered my Triumph of Tulips quilt uses the same device, so I felt that was my solution, and finished the piece that way, bringing more color to the composition at the same time.

Well it may not be that obvious to you, but it was all that to me...

Now here's what I learned in making this piece. The whole thing was started AFTER the Visions slides had been sent in and the possibility of still having a month to make a third piece in this series loomed ahead of me. The great sigh of relief had descended, I had new sketches, and plenty o'fabric, and time, blissful amounts of time.

1.I work much better (and enjoy it more) without the pressure of having to finish in time to enter something.

2. I am more likely to wait on the solution rather than throw any old thing in place as a fix.

3. I am more likely to stop and dye a specific fabric to use in the piece if necessary. ( I did, and didn't end up using any of them).

4. I am more likely to make something that is really me after having trying to challenge myself (and annoy my friends) by working outside my own style or away from my own color choices.

5. My colors are MY COLORS. Duh. One of the things that makes my quilts look like my quilts is the fabric. The wash of color effect that I employ in the Special Edition fabrics is my special look. It is the direct translation of watercolor washes into fabric. (only using dye instead of course, just to be clear). I must pound this into my little peabrain.

6. While I am sticking to abstract for a while, I found 'subject matter' appearing in this quilt and got a bit grumpy about it. Nevertheless I resisted the urge to define it further, I think and make it a picture of something specific. What I love about abstract artwork is that it engages the viewer and lets them complete the story, to their own interpretation. I don't mind what they see in the piece, since there was no real intent on a specific idea on my part. That did make the title pretty dodgey however. I almost called it several bad titles... and just settled on The Dance because it wasn't as limiting as some of the others.

I feel back in the saddle again, and wish I had several months to just make more work. I ordered plane tickets yesterday for February, so the time is flitting by. I hope those of you who can stay home and make quilts realize how jealous I am of your time...


18 comments:

  1. Obviously I am seeing this before you even post text, but I immediately smiled when I saw your "super figure" design. It reminded me of Superman with a cape billowing behind him... or maybe Superwoman... now that I take a longer look, it does have some feminine attributes. It certainly is wonderful!!

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  2. no text yet, but i'm going to say she is a very sassy angel!

    now, is the bird portrait the design inspiration you used? if so, can you describe how so, because i'm not sure i'm getting it. thanks

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  3. Is it my imagination, but is that the coolest bird ever... it's wearing shades.

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  4. Good grief....I'm an hour ahead of you and you have already posted!! I'd use getting Joey ready for school in the morning as an excuse but, at 14, he handles most of it himself. I function strictly as an alarm clock....Ok, I DID have to walk the dog. And make coffee.

    Anyway...when this opened up, full screen on my computer...well, if I hadn't been sitting down I would have fallen over. This is even more powerful (on screen, at least) than Red and Green! The bird is neat too.

    Dang woman....you never cease to amaze and inspire!

    teri

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  5. powerful as in power-full

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  6. That's it....I'm packing it all in and going back to Massage Therapy.

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  7. The Robot King, that's what I see and he emerged out of one of those balls...very futuristic...I like it...

    Rosy

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  8. Everyone's seeing a Super-person.. I'm seeing a butterfly!! (when is my appointment with my eye doctor??) But that is part of this thing.. we will all make our own "stories" from the art.

    Love the figure.

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  9. You might not feel that you ever have enough time, but I *swear*, woman, that you pack 28 hours into every day, so don't complain about your jet-setting quiltart-teaching life TOO much, ok? ;)

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  10. Whn I opened your blog and saw this, I was just knocked out. It is such a celebration of form and color. Jen

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  11. Beautiful and energetic! I'm enjoying watching the transformation from the totally abstract cruciforms to this more figurative one. As you always say, "more, more, more!"

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  12. Beautiful! Can I come peer over your shoulder while you work? or does that ignore you? lol!

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  13. Congrats for sticking to you series and getting another wonderful piece done. It is definitely you - the fabrics are stunning.

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  14. Yum! That's how I feel when everything is going well!

    Shirley from New Zealand

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  15. ENERGY! LIFE! PASSION! JOY! A WORLD BEFORE US!! This may be my favouritest EVER piece of yours, Mrs Mel, and I've been a fan for as long as I've been quilting!

    ReplyDelete
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    Anyways keep up the great work and if you don�t mind I will forward your blog off to a few of my buddies. Thanks a bunch!massage therapy clinic

    ReplyDelete
  17. I was not sure to expect when I visited your blog. Well I think the information on this blog is great. I have my own blog and I wish I got half as many constructive comments as your blog does. Anyways, I am a teacher at a University and I am always doing research on various topics. This weeks topic relates 100% to your blog. I already bookmarked you for future use. If you want to exchange information I will leave my link at the bottom of this. If you don�t mind I will add my 2 cents to this blog topic once in awhile. Although most of the time I just like to read and see what other people�s thoughts are! (hey I am a teacher!)
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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