Monday, July 16, 2012

Value of Feedback

The end of the busy month of June marked a deadline for my Art 1016 challenge group. The theme word this round was "light," which had inspired so many images in my head that it had been hard to choose. I started sketching one possibility out and then decided to go more abstract.  I wanted to work with the idea that dark colors make light colors even lighter, but I was a good way into my first attempt when I had to finally admit that as grand as my vision of this piece was, the fabric version was a disaster.

And so I started over.  I once again gathered some of my darkest hand-dyes, as well as some commercial black, and began to build unfocused rectangles of varying sizes.  The horizontal/vertical directions became too predictable and static so I pieced in a couple of diagonals at angles that felt right. The original square of light I had envisioned became a narrow fused rectangle. 

I added some machine quilting and some hand stitching with perle cotton in the black verticals that may or may not show up if you click on the image to enlarge it, faced it--and it was done!  It is, of course, 10 x 16 inches.

But, for me, the best was yet to come.  When I put the photo up on the blog (where you can see how everyone else interpreted the theme), one of the members of the group commented that it reminded her of being in a dark barn. We have a wonderful old barn that has been the scene of two weddings, as well as some quilt classes.  And I love the feel of standing in the quiet of that place. A couple of years ago I decided to use the barn as inspiration for a quilt and spent a long time standing and looking, taking pictures, doing a bit of sketching, but nothing emerged from all that conscious endeavor that I felt captured the essence of what I was feeling.  Sometimes you have to look at things out of the corner of your eye to see them, and that's what happened here. It is the interplay of light and dark that is part of the magic of the barn. I'm thinking I need to try a bigger barn piece.

And, if you are still with me, thanks for the company.

1 comment:

Gypsy Quilter said...

I love this concept . . . being in a dark place, but seeing the light. You've captured it beautifully.