Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sneak peek

It's no good, I just have to share something I am working on, and well I don't think this will spoil the quilt for everyone. As you can see this is something a bit different for me. It's a bed quilt for a collector so it will only ever be seen at this one show. I would describe it as almost a wholecloth, and it is definitely an evolution of the things I have been doing in my wholecloths. In this quilt I am trying (and so far succeeding) to make the quilting an image rather than a pattern. It's slightly nerve wracking as I can't really see the image as I work. This is a problem I run into a lot. The human eye isn't good at seeing the whole picture when it is this close to so large a work. Also the stitches are very dense in some areas which requires focusing there for quite some time. I find after doing that my brain makes that area look out of proportion. I know it is an optical illusion but it doesn't help me see how the image is working.

On the other hand I am really enjoying having large blocks of time to spend on one of my quilts. I've had two days of preparatory work for this quilt. Drafting the patterns and preparing the top. Now I am getting to quilt it is a wonderful feeling. I really love this very free but artistic type of work, even when (or perhaps especially when) it throws up lots of challenges. You may have realised that I am working from the middle of the quilt outwards. On a longarm this makes things a lot more tricky and time consuming, but I need to be able to fit the rest of the quilting around this image so I have to start by getting this into place. There is also the small matter that I haven't entirely decided what the rest of the quilting will be, so this gives the quilt a chance to talk to me.

You're probably aware that I don't make samples of techniques. I try thing straight on a real quilt (often a show quilt as it's the only time I have to play on my own work) and if it works, great if not I have to start again. Well this is almost a sample even though it is also a live show quilt. It is allowing me to try out a technique I will be using in a much more complex and time consuming piece. From what I've seen so far I am happy that the second quilt (from the graphic novel Cancertown) will work out very well. So much so I am thinking of using it on another quilt as well, which I had completely different plans for before today. The fact that it looks like this piece is going to be so important in my future works yet will only be seen once at the festival made it the obvious choice to put on my blog. I really am missing being able to share all my quilts as I work on them, but I think it will be worth it in the end.


Quilter Beth said...

Love, love, love this quilt so far.

Cher said...

I've thought of trying a picture on a whole cloth rather than the traditional quilting. Your jester playing the flute shows exactly what I thought of. Well not the jester specifically.
It looks amazing so far, can't wait to see it done.
Cher in BC

Anonymous said...

looks very cool