Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Wot, no planning? Day 2

Hmm, not such a good day. I've been stitching and discovered that stitching round a hole isn't the same as cutting back to a stitched line - not half as much fun and not particularly neat either.

Not only did I not consider quilting but I've realised today that I've no plans for finishing either and as I have an aversion to binding, this could be interesting. So do those people who go to their work space and pull out fabric and work as they go, do more planning than they are letting on or is what I call planning not what they call planning? Or perhaps I simply don't have the range of experiences that let me make these decisions 'on the hoof'.

What I have learned as I've started to quilt is that I don't have the right threads for the effect I'm looking for. I've sort of been aware of this before but have always got by somehow, but today it struck me more forcibly so I have ordered some 30wt threads. Then there's the question of 'How to quilt?'. It's become a bit of a machine quilting sampler - I've tried to work with the fabric pattern, sometimes used self coloured and sometimes contrasting threads. I still consider myself as learning how to machine quilt so the end result isn't looking great, but some bits are better than previous pieces and I think I have to be happy with that.

This all sounds as though one amazing piece of work is going to appear on Day 3 - no such luck! This is just me recording an experiment involving stepping 'out of the box' so that should any long term benefits come of it I can look back and see where it started.


Olga Norris said...

Hang on in there! It takes time playing with techniques, looking at work around, experimenting, learning what your voice is, what vocabulary you will use, what language, and what you will say. I started in 1997 my full time journey towards the point this year when I feel ready to enter work for juried exhibitions. Only now do I feel confident in relaxing into the rest of the journey. I'm not saying that everyone will take the same amount of time, but, ....

If you are working at your textiles part time you should perhaps think of your progress as if you were learning a foreign language. You still need to practise, practise, practise. And one great change I found when moving from my part-time artmaking and now is that I am not afraid to experiment-and-toss. Before I was so focussed on completing something, then feeling let down because it was far from 'perfect'.

But what fun it is along the way!

Linda B. said...

Too much negativity coming through? I didn't mean for that to be the case - I've learned a lot from this allotted playtime. The more so because it was in a structured context which has made it easier for me to be clear about what I know and what I have learned. It is all too easy to look at a less than 'successful' and be disheartened by the end product. In this instance it is the process that is my focus. Perhaps the negativity came from expressing views about my work in a public arena, which is something that I'm not yet entirely comfortable about.