Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Thanks to Jane Davila, I finally figured it out!

If you remember in March I did on post on Quilt Show Judges comments.  I had just received my quilts and comments back from the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Fest.  All in all the comments were spot on, but I just couldn't seem to comprehend what one comment was meant to tell me.....  "Your quilting was all the same size, flattening the otherwise very daring composition."  I discussed this comment with quite a few quilting friends and we all just scratched our head.  How would varying the size of the quilting improve the composition?  Especially when the design included trapunto and to see the full effect of the trapunto, you need tight quilting.  That is what helps make the trapunto stand out.

Well, last night Jane Davila gave a lecture to The Pelham Quilters on the "Elements of Design".  She discussed the principles of color, value, contrast, symmetry, repetition, scale......  and quite a few others and how they work together to help improve the design of the quilt and to tell the quilts story (oh..  I will share one quote in a bit, that really hit me in the face :-).   She shared some of her pieces, as well as those from family and friends to highlight how each of these elements improved the overall aesthetics of the quilt.  But notice the word SCALE.....  hmmmm...  the judges comment talked about how my quilting was all the same size.  Well, think about it, varying scale of objects in your quilt top, makes it more interesting...  your eye has to roam, move around the quilt.  The various size of objects help to make some more important or dominant in the quilt top, while allowing others to play back-up roles.  We do this all the time, without even realizing it.  All this I knew.......  But could this really be true with the quilting?  OMG yes!  The quilt in question, has 3 different size medallions, nested one inside the other, appliqued on a blue background.

Can you imagine the difference in this piece, if I increased the scale of the quilting as I came out from the center?  Since the colors get brighter as you work your way out of the center, just think if the quilting did the same... from tiny to small to medium to large!  It might even had an almost 3D effect !!!

Well, thank you Jane for my 'AHA!' moment.  Sometimes, we have to have a nail pierce through our outer protective layer and listen with no ownership for us to really understand things that can effect both our being and our art!!  I am glad, that I was at least open enough for it to penetrate, for that is how we grow, both as individuals and as artist.

Now for the comment of the night (at least in my humble opinion)....

"Art is a conversation between the artist and a viewer, so a piece is not finished, until it has been viewed by someone else besides the artist."


1 comment:

Barbara said...

It's a beautiful quilt no matter what the judges said. But you really can see how that would change the look of the quilt. And for the quote - maybe that's why we all love show and tell and guild so much - so we can have it viewed by others and ooh and aah over it. I can't tell you the feeling you get when you do a trunk show and people come afterwards and tell you what their favorite quilt was or when you win a ribbon in a show - to know someone really looked at all your hard work.