I’ve got 2 posts this week, one on teaching and this one on taking and making.
I took Pat Pauly‘s “Take Two” class this week and I’m reeling, in a good way! If you don’t know Pat or her work, her website describes her:
“Known for her improvisational technique, Pat Pauly uses bold color and unusual juxtapositions of printed and painted fabric. Her workshops on the contemporary art quilt carry the same qualities as her work—energized, spontaneous, and artistic. With a mastery of diverse construction techniques, Pat uses textiles as a medium of choice.”
Pat has been creating work of merit since the mid-80’s and I found her formal art training to be invaluable. Her eye is very well trained and her critiques were specific and encouraging, yet clear on how to improve a piece. Pat is a master of color and composition, something I am almost desperate to learn about. I was definitely in the right workshop with the right teacher.
I thought I would probably be an outlier in that class and I was right. Many of the students had a great depth of knowledge of color, print and design and then there was Jenny! That’s okay, I was there to learn. Most students had a variety of hand printed fabric to work with. I had two…that I bought from Pat at Craft Napa 2020, grin.
I made sure I was prepared and did a fabric pull so that I was ready:
Hah – that was the exact wrong thing to do! My choices were way off, and more than anything, we needed a clear design wall. Oh well.
We started with some warm-up exercises to get us thinking:
Take a calendar photo and cut it up – not too much! Find new combinations? Cool colors? Interesting design? We were not looking for a cohesive image to start with, but images/fabric with a range of values/scale/texture.
Take 2 12″ squares, cut and reassemble. Pat critiqued each and there was much to learn from that simple piece.
Working with quarter yards now, also learning to piece “windows”:
Yeah, I know. It’s a mess, no retrieving this one. Lesson learned: don’t cut too much! What, me, overthink it???
Working more deliberately now, thinking about scale, movement, color, variety, juxtaposition:
Not horrible, definitely better. I haven’t worked this piece much. It could benefit from a little more time and contemplation. Yes, that is Denise Burkitt’s fabric from Free Spirit (link to current line).
Okay, now pull out full yards of your precious fabrics, ones you love. Hmmm, I was not quite ready for a full yard so I wisely opted for half yard pieces from Pat’s two one-yard prints.
These are totally thrown up on my design wall, not edited at all! I can see that this might eventually be a decent piece. It needs some time to process.
Every once in awhile you take the right workshop at the right time. This was it for me. I did not expect to emerge with something I would enter into Quilt National. That allowed me to dismiss any intimidation I felt from my lack of experience.
I learned so much in my 2 days with Pat and the other students. Pat was able to present composition in a way that made at least some of this very much tangible. It was fun and I learned so much! Pat is very chill and an excellent communicator. Her critiques were spot on, perhaps one of the most valuable parts of my 2 days with her.
BTW, my fav quilt of hers, Blue Garden.
I’ve also been doing a bit of, gasp, hand work too, starting with a print from Turtle Hand Batiks and adding some hand stitching, influenced by my friend Catherine Redford‘s book, Butterfly Stitches: Hand Embroidery & Wool Applique Designs. Lookie:
It’s just a start, more to come. I used to do a ton of embroidery as a kid. I do feel a give-away coming on…
I’ll be linking up: