Saturday, January 29, 2011

Challenge Wrap Up-Libby

Over The Fence
11" x 14" Painted fabric affixed to 3/4" profile canvas
Of the pieces that I made for this challenge, I think this one best exemplifies all aspects of what I learned during this time period. I treated the piece as I would have an actual painting and utilized all of the current skills that I had at that point with regard to painting techniques. For me, this piece is successful because I was able to put in to practice my method (for lack of a better word) of taking a photograph to which I have no connection and combining it with figurative work to produce a completely different story; my own version of what the photo could say. I learned how to do this during this challenge and it helped me to work with photos that were not my own and as I have said, to which I have no emotional connection. Also, the piece is important to me because it was the first one I did where I painted the figures directly on to the painting-not appliqued and "tried out" on something else first so as to not ruin the painting.

With regard to techniques, this piece is also the first one where I heavily employed chalk pastels to fill in gaps in the acrylic paint. I found out that although they are two different mediums, they can work successfully together (regardless of their different textures) on the fabric.

I also learned some valuable things about working with the photos of others. Everyone really has their own concept of what is inspirational to them. I am going to write more about this at some point on my blog in order to work through my thoughts on this. I learned something too about developing a concept and when to go with the first idea you come up with; how to not reach too far afield and make something more complicated than it has to be. Editing is crucial to not killing yourself. I also learned some things about working in a group.

In any case, I am pleased to have discovered a love of illustration of all types and also that I have a real liking of working with acrylics and pastels. There is just something about painting (whether on fabric or paper or whatever) that allows me to express an idea in a way that is more fluid and flexible than fabric.

Lastly, thank you to everyone for your participation. It is my firm belief that a group can only be as good as its members allow it to be. Involvement and commitment are key components to success. Twelve months is a long time so thank you again for sticking with the challenge.



  1. I've enjoyed how you have personalized each of the month's pictures. You have made dramatic progress this year with your techniques and explorations of paint with fabric. I'm not sure you would have made those huge strides without an expected showing each month; for that reason alone, I think your participation in this challenge has been a personal bonus.

    It's been a pleasure working with you & I hope we will have another opportunity soon. This challenge has been a way to get to know each other past all the blogspeak. Thank you!

  2. I've always enjoyed your individual vision of these photos. I agree with Debra about the value of the forced practice, not just for you but for all of us. Thank you, Libby. Debra said it better than I could.

  3. If I were to choose a favorite from among your year's worth of interpretations, it would be this one. As you've said, it includes all aspects of what I perceive this challenge to be about ... your personal recognizable style combined with the environment presented by the photo to end up with a piece that is uniquely yours.

  4. I believe I saw the most growth and change in your work. You have found a new direction to travel and that is a huge discovery. I agree with Nellie, this is the one I would have also picked in this years interpretations as your best work.

    I think what I enjoyed most about your interpretations was the story that you came up with to tell from each photo. You took each of these to your own personal place and took the viewer with you.

  5. I learned a lot from you- not just on the blog, but outside it. Your way of personalizing each photo is something I will take with me. I think you also produced a cohesive body of work, one that has your unique stamp on it.

    I really appreciate all the work you did keeping this challenge going over the year. Thank you so much.

  6. I could always find a story in your pieces this year - my favorites were "As I see it" and "Over the Fence" - these two in particular conveyed a strong story line for me. I also liked the richness of the colors. I'm also remember how clever I thought "Scarlet Willow" was.

    Thanks for the work, time, effort you and Debra put in to pulling this group together and keeping us on track.


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