Wednesday, November 25, 2015
The Twelve Days Of Thanksgiving….Day Eleven
I did a lot of research and development for all the classes I taught over the years.
I have always enjoyed pushing the boundaries and discovering something new or a better way to do something.
Sometimes I discovered something before one of the big names was doing it. I don’t feel they copied me. I think there is something called simultaneous discovery.
I have had the opportunity to learn from some of the best. I have taken a lot of classes over the years from some of the biggest names in quilting and surface design.
I then chose to put my own signature on what I learned in those classes.
Colors Of My Life 1 – making something I learned my own
I am thankful I became a member of several quilt guilds in Wisconsin and Illinois who brought in the best presenters and teachers.
Other members inspired me and did fantastic work. Some of those guild friends have become national and international teachers and I keep in contact with many of them.
I started attending various seminars and classes in the 1980’s. Most of the early ones were on quilting.
See How My Garden Grows – Using Jinny Beyer’s tessellation technique and making it my own.
I attended many of Jinny Beyer’s seminars at Hilton Head Island and still am in close touch with friends I met and several members of her staff.
I also was a First Place winner in both of the contest RJR sponsored using her fabric.
After I gave up teaching I concentrated on surface design seminars.
Shrine To A Polymer Clay Goddess – quilt with polymer clay embellishment
Spider Mum – using technique I learned in Sue Benner’s class
I also started attending classes at Katie Pasquini’s Alegre Retreat in Santa Fe. I took a polymer clay class from Pier Voulkos at the first one I attended. I am so thankful to have had such a great beginning class to give me a foundation to build on with my clay work. After that all the classes were some type of surface design. Other attendee’s would share information about instructors and I can say by taking their advice I learned from some people I had never even heard of who were wonderful teachers. Of course I also made friends there who I still keep in contact with.
When the Alegre Retreat stopped I started taking classes at Nancy Crow’s barn in Ohio. The classes I took there were from Carol Soderlund and Jan Myers Newberry, the two very best dyeing instructors. I have used what I learned from them and pushed the limits to make it my own.
Just a few fabrics I created in one of Jan’s classes. I make it a point to actually use fabrics I create in my work, rather than letting them sit on a shelf and taking them out and petting them once in a while.
I created this composition with the trimmings from the fabric of the personal color palette I created to trade with some of the other classmates who I met in Carol's classes. I met Pauline Davy and Kay Webb in the first class I took from Carol and we have kept in close touch.
Another exciting quilting trip was a reception Karey Bresenhan hosted. We were invited to visit her Franch to see the work of Virginia Spiegel and Liz Berg. They were spending a month there in a residency because of their work for Fiber Art For A Cause.
Karey, Vicky Magnum and Karen Stiehl Osborn relaxing under a tree.
I traveled to Austin and stayed with Frances Holiday Alford for for the first one and spent one day and night at the Franch.
For the second Frances, Karen Stiehl Osborn and myself were Karey’s special guests at the Franch for 3 days. I met some very special people on both of these trips. I’m going to drop a few names! Frances, Karen Stiehl Osborn, Sylvia Weir, Kathy York, Connie Conley Hudson, Jamie Fingal, Leslie Jenison, Jeanelle McCall, Misty Fuse Iris and too many others to mention. Karey is a very special person and hostess.
It was fun to stay in the bedrooms Karey created for her guests.
I am again at a cross roads in my life with my art and I am no longer attending classes. I am doing the work and discovering my own new and exciting ways of creating using color, dye, paint and fabric and assembling it into my own art.
I have always been one who never questioned if I could do something, I just did it and that has allowed me so many experiences and discoveries as I travel this road called my life and my art.
I would never be at the place I am now if it weren’t for my own research and development combined with all the classes and seminars I attended.
I am not one who sets out with goals and plans on what I hope to do with my life.
I am living my life serendipitously and for me it has been a true blessing that I am so thankful for.
I could never have imagined all the experiences and places my quilting career would take me.
The works I have chosen to share here are not necessarily the best I have done, they are just ones that best illustrate what I am saying.