Friday, February 6, 2015

Steal A Technique - Off the Wall Friday

Another week,
more piecing the curve, which by the way is coming nicely!  But it does give a girl time to think.  This week, my mind landed on a book that I recently have been re-reading - Masters: Art Quilts Volume 2 Curated by Martha Sielman.  Have you ever noticed that with a lot of your art books, every time you read them, you get something new out of them?  Well, that's exactly what happened to me this time.  While I was reading, I found a new thing I could steal. . .A technique.

Most times, when I've picked up this book in the past, I'm overwhelmed by all the pretty pictures and tend to skim the verbiage.  But this time, I noticed how Sielman highlighted a lot of the techniques, these master quilters used.  Who knew there were so many ways to construct an art quilt?!?

Until the Day, Emily Richardson
For instance, Emily Richardson, takes silk organza and paints it with acrylic paints.  Then she takes the newly painted silk and cuts it up into hunks arranging them into a pleasing composition.  The piece is all sewn together by hand using a nice blanket stitch of  matching embrodiery thread.  It struck me that she comes up with thoroughly modern method of construction, only to finish it off with a very traditional sewing method.

Dirkje van der Horst-Beetsma from the Netherlands puts a piece of cotton base in a big embroidery hoop.  She then takes pieces of colored fabric and sews it on the base without using any pins or fusing.  She just builds the piece as she goes.  This kind of technique opens up a lot of possibilities for improvisational composition.

Autumn Sky, Reiko Naganuma
Japanese Reiko Naganuma pieces her blocks in a traditional manner then slashes through them in straight lines moving the block apart.  This then shows the underlaying foundation material.  The slashes are unexpected and lend a nice movement to her work.

I could go on.  As you can see,  most of these masters have developed their own forms of techniques most of which you won't find in your  basic "How to Make A Quilt" book.  Nontraditional?  Yes  Ineffectual?  Absolutely Not.

Which brings me back to where I began.  Why  not steal borrow a technique?  Or at least let a stolen technique lead you to your own explorations.  Now I'm not saying that we need to fill our toolbox up with every Tom, Dick and Technique.  I'm just saying that you never know where a new tool might lead.

So with that in mind, I'm going to be ordering me some silk samples from Thai Silk  - along with some organza.  I mean if you're going to steal, you might as well start with Silk!

So what have you been up to creatively?


Jenny K. Lyon said...

Silk is always a good start! I have that book too and I don't remember any of what you just described. I need to get it out too and re-read, um, or maybe read for the first time.

Maggi said...

As far as technique goes, there really is no point in reinventing the wheel so I'm of the opinion that we should borrow/steal knowing that what we create will not be a copy of the original but a move ahead in our own journey. (Blimey, that sounds pompous!!). I was lucky enough to see Masters 2 at the Festival of Quilts a few years ago - a great exhibition and I now need to re-visit the book!

Debra said...

Love the technique from Dirkje. I wonder if she has problems with the edges flipping up and stitching over them as she stitching. I think I need to give this new technique a try - Thanks!

quiltedfabricart said...

Wow! I think I need that book! We all gave our own style built from stealing techniques. That's what makes us all different. I love the slasher.

Kaja said...

Some great new techniques - thanks for sharing them :-)

Shannon said...

I have that book too- it's great, but I've also mostly been enamored by the pictures! I'll definitely have to go back and read some of the text more carefully....

Margaret said...

I'm lovin' that Dutch artist's idea with the pieces on foundation and a hoop (or stabilizer -- like a dab of glue from a stick?)...And I have "Masters" -- the first volume. Thanks for the nudge to go back and really read it. :-)

compusword said...

Yes, yes, there is so much to learn/try! I have no problem "stealing/borrowing" from something because I give credit from whom/where I saw it. I shall have to check out that book. Let's go try something new-to-us. Liz in Houston