Monday, May 9, 2011

Northern Star Quilt Show 2011: Part II

Here's an update on the NSQS, A World of Quilts XXXII.  I never did post pictures from all the other wonderful quilts. 

This won Best in Show....  it is fantastic...  but it took Carolyn Cook 4 years to complete!  Shaping the trees and adding all the details.  The trees on the right hand side are shaped by using wide ropeing, cut in half and stitched over with various yarns.  If you get a close look, you will see how each element was made individually and added to the top.  Carolyn said it took her months to decide to leave the top uneven.  Her original plan was to have a black boarder...  but after looking at it behind the piece for months she knew it wasn't right.  I am glad she didn't.

You have seen this piece before, it is from my friend, Donna Chambers.  "Dr Smoooth" was a creation pulled together after taking a 3D class with Mary Anne Ciccotelli.  Donna and Mary Anne (you'll see her quilt in a minute) are both members of Pelham Quilters with me as well as a fellow quilters in the mini-group I belong to.

"Goodbye NY" by Jerri Riggs received Honorable Mention.  Jerri is known for his bright colors, which is why I have always loved her work.  There is tons of quilting in this piece.  Jerri dyed her own fabric for the background.

I have always wanted to do a Jacqueline de Longe quilt.  Here is one "Colors of Life" by M. Sugar.  Look at all the piecing.  I love those points and colors!

Another friend of mine, Mary Anne Ciccotelli, made this quilt as a wedding present for her niece and nephew.  It is absolutely gorgeous!

I really was happy to see so many quilts of different styles and techniques, and soo many by my quilting friends :-).  I actually watched this piece by Sandra Parratt, another member of my mini group, come alive.  I remember Sandra going through the decision process on the size and shape of the black birds.  "Eye of the Black Bird" took 2nd Place in it's category of small quilts.  Sandra does a ton of thread painting in her work.  She did a lesson for our mini group, but I still haven't mastered the technique.

 This quilt just captured my eye for a long while.  "Scattered Blocks" by Sterk (sorry, I missed the first name), is very different then the rest of the quilts in the show.  Each block is totally different, but blends into the rest of the quilt quite nicely.  I love the way she gave the illusion of the blocks being 3D by adding a darker fabric to give the feel of shadows.

While I didn't get pictures for some reason, I want to give a shout-out to Eunice and her husband.  Both got ribbons this year.  Eunice for 2 very different quilts, in 2 very different styles.  Eunice and I, as well as Donna Chambers partake in the bi-annual Country Quilter Retreat (hear after to be known as the CQ Getaway).  Way to go Eunice!

Ok, time to get quilting.  I will see if I can post more pics later in the week.


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Quilters are such wonderful people!

I received a really wonderful card yesterday with a Happy Birthday message from a woman I have never met before.  She is a fellow quilter and member of Empire Quilters, a guild I belong to in NYC, although I rarely attend the meetings.  In the card were photo's of two of my quilts which were in the recent Empire Quilter's Show - Urban Inspirations. 

In the card was a note, telling me how much she enjoyed seeing my quilts in the show, congratulating me on my ribbon and telling me how much she enjoys seeing my work.  WOW!  I am deeply touched.  She concluded by saying she was one of my many fans :-).

So Cindy Russell....  if by chance you happen to be at this months meeting, I will be there and I hope I get the opportunity to Thank You in person for making my day!


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."


Sunday, May 1, 2011

Northern Star Quilt Show 2011: 3 Quilts and 3 Ribbons..... WooHoo!

I have been on the road in Latin America this past week, but I was very happy to make it back in time to attend the Northern Star 2011 World of Quilts Show in Somers, NY.  The show always features a very diverse body of quilts, which is full of new and exiting techniques as well as traditional bed quilts.

Well, last night I received an email congratulating me on my ribbon from a friend in the Pelham Quilters.  While on my way up to the show today, I got a text from another friend Teri Lucas, that simply said "WOW".  So yes, I was excited and I knew I had won something, but since I had 3 quilts in the show, I didn't know which one or what type of ribbon.

As I walked into the show floor, fellow guild members from 2 guilds and friends from the Country Quilter Retreat gang, came up offering their congratulations.  I thanked them all, but still didn't know what for.  The first quilt I saw was "In the Spotlight" with it's 2nd Place ribbon in the Appliqued Wallhanging - Human/Animal category and I was so happy.  It got an "Honorable Mention" last month at the Empire Quilter's show.  Then I turned the corner and to my surprise, there was "Mis Hijos" the portrait quilt of my children from a workshop with Bisa Butler and it received "Honorable Mention" in the small quilts category.  I was soo happy...:-)  2 ribbons, just like last years show!!  Well I continued through the show and I was stopped in my tracks.....  there was "In a Blaze of Glory" with a 3rd place ribbon in the Appliqued Wallhanging category!!!

I was so thrilled, I stood in the middle of the aisle and just grinned.  3 quilts, 3 different styles of quilting, 3 totally different looks and 3 ribbons.  I am humbled.  Thank You Northern Stars :-)....

Of course there were many other wonderful quilts in the show, but I will have to share those tomorrow, as I am almost out of battery on my laptop.  But I thought I would close by sharing the text I received from my son, when I told him that I had won ribbons on all 3 quilts.....  He replied....  "LOL you mean a quilt with my face on it won a ribbon!"