Un-multi-tasking

Through thin and thick.

Conflict No. 2
As my last post indicated, I got a piece into Quilt National, and yes, I am pleased. This now allows me to show some of the work that I have finished during the two year period before Quilt National. The prohibition to show new work is difficult, and as I am now working on some pieces that have the same requirements, few people outside of my immediate family and Nancy Crow master class participates have seen my work for over two years.
I have mostly been working very large and most of my work has been in one series- "Conflict." Much of my work has been inspired by the conflagration in Syria- the huge displaced population, the enormous number of deaths, and Assad's gassing of his own people. And of course my own inner conflict comes out in my work.

My work has changed over the last two years.  I am working a lot larger, and thin pieced lines have almost vanished from my work. In their place I have large rectangular masses and heavier lines. My pieces are laid out before I sew as opposed to my slash and sew technique. The style of my machine quilting has progressed to include a much more layered approach with many more intersecting lines.
Detail of Conflict No 2




Conflict No 1/ detail
There are a couple of reasons that I abandoned my detailed piecing. The scale of the thin lines did not map well to the size of my new pieces. I also had an interesting discussion with Nancy Crow. She commented on the use of my detailed thin lines and said that she thought they were probably very popular and well received. But she vastly preferred the larger work that I had recently I started on. I think that working in thin lines was comfortable for me. Few people are doing that kind of labor intensive piecing since it takes so much time. I like the freedom of cutting and resewing pieces, and in a sense it let me off the hook for considering my compositions. I also was not able to pick up elements and move them around, thinking and rethinking how a piece looks.
So the interesting question for me is, "When do you listen to a mentor and when do you proceed the way you want to proceed?" I worked very large for about two years.... no small lines whatsoever. No circles, no fine piecing. And I think I learned a lot.
Conflict No 3

But at the end of the two year period I started to combine large shapes with finer lines, and I think that many of the pieces that I am working on are starting to click. So its not all thin lines or all thick lines, but subtle variations of the two. It is making my compositions more complex Unfortunately I can not show you this work yet, but stay tuned. I'll post some additional photos in the coming days.