I am both thrilled and sad that my year-long on-line Design Master Class with Elizabeth Barton is over. I worked really hard in class and actually completed 9 of the 11 projects, purposefully chose not to complete one month because I was not enjoying my piece, and then just flat missed October’s piece.
I am proud of my work, how HARD I worked, and that I completed all but 2 months’ projects. I have been rewarded richly for my efforts and I’m pleased with how my skills have improved.
I had no clue when I began the class that we were expected to complete 11 quilts in a year! This was the same year that I was SAQA Co-Rep (a huge job), did 9 guild gigs, taught at a new shop, taught 8 times locally, created a new lecture and 3 new classes, taught 5 classes at Houston, had a few family trips and attended the SAQA conference on the East Coast. I plan on this year being a little more reasonable.
I’ve got some photos o share of my final lap in the Design Master Class:
October’s assignment was to create a piece that featured color to create a mood or feeling. Although I hoped to be able to make this quilt, this was the only month that I did not even begin the actual quilt. My preparations to teach in Houston consumed that entire month. This is as far as I got, sigh. But it is a great line-up of fabric and color, no?
For the Nov/Dec assignment Elizabeth gave us 3 photos to work from as our inspiration point. We could go any direction we wanted, keeping in mind what we learned throughout the year. We had 2 months to complete our piece. By far the best work of most of the other students came this month. I wish I could show you!
I came up with this sketch from the photo. I thought the building tops and vegetation were the most interesting parts of the scene. Elizabeth said yikes, there’s a whole lot of action going on with those buildings-why? Well she said more elegantly than that, but you get the gist.
She mentioned the work of Friedensreich Hundertwasser and Patrick Caulfield in her comments. I can’t tell you how many times she or other students would mention the names of artists and I had no idea who they were. There is no art history in my background-I’m playing catch-up!
Here I have greatly simplified the buildings and it’s a much better composition, more cohesive and a lot calmer. This is one of those times when I just did as suggested, without really understanding it until afterwards. This is so much better than the first sketch!
I meant for this to be a black and white piece. I stitched it up that way initially. But it looked dead. I thought why don’t I just stitch those buildings in vibrant colors? I envisioned a kind of a fun, funky piece. This is awful! The colors are not repeated elsewhere in the piece, they make no sense-what was I thinking?
Any blue markings you see in the photos are washable markings that have not been removed.
What would happen if I made the buildings in fabric? And made them wonky? I dug into my black and white stash to find the right texture and scale. What a mess!
The second go-round was much better. I hadn’t quilted the sky yet. I submitted this for critique and Elizabeth noted that it was a bit unbalanced, and suggested that I use fabric elsewhere in the piece.
Adding quilting to the sky and fabric to the walkway made a huge difference. I submitted this to Elizabeth for critique and she was quite pleased. She noted that the end of the path now was in the center of the piece, something I did not notice as I moved my cropping lines. She also suggested that the path should lead right into the buildings, a minor fix. I thought that the vegetation in the lower left hand corner was a little heavy too.
Elizabeth also suggested that I repeat the diagonal quilting elsewhere in the piece. I ignored that one-too much to rip out to make that happen. I understood her point but I was just not going to implement that suggestion on this piece.
Adding the last piece of sidewalk did relax the piece a bit and I like that tweak. Also, cropping off the heavy lower vegetation rebalanced the piece.
The back in this case is unremarkable. I’m done.
Now, how do I feel about this piece? Meh. It just isn’t speaking to me. I “like” it but it doesn’t move me. I learned a lot from this piece so it was well worth the time.
Linking to Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Friday.