Behind the Gate 22" x 22"
Machine pieced and applique, machine quilting
This piece exemplifies what I tried to do throughout the year, although I only gradually became aware of these aims. What I hoped to do in each piece was not reproduce the photo, or create something suggested by the photo, but find one element of it that I thought most interesting and build a composition around that element.
This piece is one of the most successful, very largely because it fit so easily into my way of working. A central design element of lines was there, there is an obvious technique (strip piecing) that could create those lines, and the theme or idea of wild foliage barely in control was also clear and easy to do technically.
The only new technique in this piece was the way I created the two-sided leaves so that they could be partly attached to the whole after quilting. This isn't totally new, but the use of Liquid Thread in this way is new to me, and one I worked out myself. I can see using it again where appropriate.
Several people commented that this piece uses traditional quilting techniques in a way that is not traditional. I hope that I can do more work along that line. I do know that what appeals to me in quilting is line, shape, and color, not realistic pictorial images. This preference became more and more clear to me as the year went on, and that insight into my own taste and style was one of the benefits of the challenge.
This year's challenge has been an eye opener in other ways too. I learned the difficulty of having to meet a creative deadline, sometimes with very little in the way of "inspiration." Creativity is not only about inspiration, but about practice and regular work, about gritting your teeth and just doing it. The challenge proved that, and I'm proud that I finished every piece, every month.
Last, but not at all least, I loved the spirit of this group. Every month, after struggling with the "Interpretation" I looked forward to the reveals and the comments. Thank you, Debra and Libby, for the work you did to organize this challenge, and thanks to everyone else for your creativity, your talent, and your support. I'm going to miss that.
All my pieces for this challenge can be found here.