Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A Long Weekend and Velda Newman

The long weekend has come and gone, and I didn't get a lot done. Life has been throwing curve balls at me since the beginning of the year, and I'm not left with a lot of time for art. The Road to California Quilt Show was this past weekend, and I was planning to go, but didn't. Road is one of the larger shows in Southern California. I don't believe it's affiliated with any one guild, and accepts entries from all over. One of my goals last year was to enter a piece in this show. Unfortunately, that goal didn't get realized. It's now one of my goals for this year!

I did, however, take a class with Velda Newman through our quilt guild this weekend. I missed the beginning of her lecture at the guild meeting on Thursday, but did get there in time to help show her quilts. I love holding up the speaker's quilts at the meetings, because I get a very up-close and personal view of their work. Also, being a fiber artist, I love to touch! You can't touch quilts at shows, for very good and obvious reasons. Being able to touch the quilts the speakers bring adds a whole different understanding of the fabric and textures they get in their work. I had heard of Velda a year or so ago, and loved her quilts. When I heard she was coming to our guild and doing a workshop, I was one of the first to sign up! Her quilts are large, intricate and very colorful works of art. She just finished one that's 15 feet long! Unfortunately, she couldn't bring that one with her I would have loved to see it.

The class she gave on Saturday was Texture and Form 1. It was a technique class in how to add dimension to a flat shape with stitching. I had so much fun! We did a basket, a lemon, two leaves, and a melon.

Although this was a techniques class, and these are really just samples, I'll probably use the basket and melon as accents on a couple of totes. (Have I mentioned before that I love tote bags?!) The leaves are perfect for a quilt that I'm working on using a piece I did in a class with Patt Blair (more of that in another post). I have no idea what to do with the lemon yet. I know I'll come up with something.

Velda was great. She was friendly, fun, informative, and helpful. I think we all laughed as much as we worked.

The techniques were superb. Having taken several drawing classes, the technique for the basket was pretty logical. It followed basic drawing rules for creating the illusion of a 3-D form on a 2-D surface. But her take on it in thread was very effective. The lemon was an interesting study in texture; very time consuming, though. I loved the leaves! What a great idea, and a wonderful timesaver! The technique used on the melon was my absolute favorite. It has so much potential! I've got several ideas for using the technique in other pieces.

The rest of the weekend was somewhat depressing. I didn't really get much of anything done, other than sewing a button on a shirt, working a bit on a couple of swap items, and taking the photos of the techniques above. I do need to get more done this week. The swap items mentioned above are late. Both are very close to being finished, and I need to get them done this week and in the mail. If either of my swap partners are reading this, please know that I have been putting some time into them each weekend, and will get them to you as soon as possible. At any rate, I need to turn my dream of being able to do art full time into a reality. I just don't know how to go about it. I have a few ideas, but the one thing I need most (time) is the one I have the least amount of! Think positive, Michele!

Until next week, take care, and thanks for reading.

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