Monday, June 22, 2015

Lasting Lessons from Valerie



Last summer I took a terrific workshop with Valerie Goodwin at the annual Quilting by the Lake event held in Syracuse, New York. The title of her work shop was Design with Color, but it was so much more than that.

I have admired Valerie’s work for several years and saw it first in Quilting Arts magazine. Her art quilt maps just knocked me out! Maps?! Fabric?! Geographically-placed visual stories?! Right up my alley! She constructs beautiful fabric collage to tell her stories, and I bought her book Art Quilt Maps to learn more. But the thing that got me to the workshop - in spite of all kinds of complications - was seeing her work from 12 inches away at the Cartography: Artists as Map Makers exhibit at the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center in Auburn, NY last June. Her materials and narratives were so inspiring, that I went home, rearranged my schedule, and send in my registration for the second week of Quilting by the Lake.



I’ll start with the finished collage backgrounds I used for a couple of my recent pieces using Valerie’s technique. Then I’ll explain how they were constructed in the next couple of posts.    
   
Jacaranda
The piece at the right is one of a group of works I made using Valerie's techniques for my backgrounds. This one, Jacaranda, is based on a photo I took in Oaxaca, Mexico of a doorway in an ancient stone building. As I walked past it one morning, the sun was hitting a brilliantly blooming jacaranda tree back in the courtyard. I wanted my background to convey the texture of  the old building with its somewhat crumbling walls. You can see many intentional imperfections and its rectangles of stone blocks.







My Pink House





You may have seen this piece on the left before. It is my Pink House fabric collage, an embellished version of my new studio, gallery, and home. This time, the collage using Valerie's technique makes up the house itself, which is then the background for more collage work. The house is 115 years old, and I wanted the siding to have a somewhat random look (although it doesn't appear that way, at least not on the front of the house). 

Below is an under-construction detail of the addition of the door and windows on top of that background.
If you like the look of this technique, I highly recommend Valerie's book. Even better, track her down at one of her workshops.

Next post - how to get started.

1 comment:

  1. Neat post. It will be fun to see and read how you put Valerie's techniques to play (to work?).

    ReplyDelete

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