17 February 2010

something new - take 2

After making Strike 1 and Strike 2, I've fallen a bit in love with strong graphic images. Combine that with all the blogs I read that belong to quilters that are producing bold graphic pieced quilts and I suppose this was inevitable:

This is what's on my design wall right now (another benefit of the cleaning binge from yesterday is that I can actually use my design wall again - details, details...).

I don't love it and I don't hate it.

Let me just say that doing random piecing like this is not as easy as it looks. This is also the first thing I've ever pieced so that was an adventure as well. I've always avoided it because, well...I don't like all the measuring and fussing and sweating that is involved in the more traditional form of quilting. So the idea of this was far more appealing.

Here are the things I like about it:

1. The color palette. Neutrals, browns and blues - those seem to be my favorites lately.

2. Hand dyed fabric (those above are all from Gailforces Fabrics, very posh stuff)

3. The freedom of it

Things I dislike about it:

1. Too many big pieces (maybe too many pieces period)

2. Not enough impact (which means that my colors are maybe too matchy and there are too many of them)

3. Have zero clue on how to finish it

Since I work almost exclusively by hand, I had a bit of whiplash for how quickly things move when you use the machine. Sounds dorky, I know, but my machine and I have a long history of fighting and just generally hating each other. But we have long worked out a truce for sewing straight lines so it works out well for this situation.

Which makes the third reason under dislike list a bit of a conundrum. I'm not a machine quilter. Truth is, I don't like the astehtic for my work. I admire what others do with it but it took me a long time to realize that its just not my thing.

If I decided that machine quilting suited it best, I could send it out to have it quilted by someone else but that doesn't sit well with me at all (unless this was a personal lap quilt, then I'd have no issue with it but for my art? Nope, gotta be all done by me or it just won't fly).

I'm going to give it another stab, maybe work on a much smaller piece to see if I can get what I'm thinking of (the one on board is about 24" long by 20" high). I've also done some trolling around on the internet and there are a few other tricks that I think I'm going to try.

Not wanting to waste what I did already, I think I'll just keep adding to it until its a respectable lap quilt size and make it something useful.

It feels good to let myself off the leash and try whatever I want. We'll see if anything comes of this...


wlstarn said...

I think it would have more zing if not all the fabrics were solids. Look, for example at Rayna Gillman's stuff. If you're going for solids it probably needs a lot more pieces, Like something Nancy Crow or Anne Parker does (influenced by N Crow). http://www.annerparker.com/index.htm

Kim Hambric said...

It has plenty of impact for me, but then I don't like being assaulted by artwork. LOVE the colors.

Perhaps a few small pieces mixed in a handful of places would work. If it were mine, I'd be adding a few large stamped images. I'm a stamping freak, though. Might not be to everyone's taste.

I like the direction its taking so far.

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Jean Baardsen said...

If you don't want to quilt it - which I totally understand - what about gluing it to a large canvas and using it for the background for a mixed media piece? Maybe something architectural like city buildings. I like the colors!

Gisela Towner said...

I think your colors are lovely. No ideas beyond that for you, but I really like it so far.

Jackie L. said...

I think there is something pretty cool about this piece. Some sort of printing or stamping is what pops into my mind as a possible next step.

bj parady said...

What I'm noticing is something I myself have a problem with a lot--value. The two white pieces really jump out against all the other similar values...maybe add more white or tone them down?