I don't need to sell my soul...

The latest quilt that I've completed is a digital print wholecloth.

It's a design that I created in my sketchbook using traditional methods, mostly block print, a little bit of watercolour paint and some drawing.

I scanned the page gave it a little tweak in Photoshop et voila! a quilt design is born. So there is, if you like, a paper original and a quilt original. The design is one of a series that I really liked and they're available to purchase as fabric prints in the Fingerprint online store.

Why am I telling you this? Well it's not a sales pitch, it's more a thought on how this way of working opens up a whole world of possibilities:

If you like my quilt you can go to the store and order a piece of fabric that has the identical print on the identical fabric and you can make your own version. Is this me selling out? No! I really hope that someone out there will still want to buy the original one that I made because I made it. But if not, someone might still like the design enough to have it in their home and just buy the print. When it comes to the quilting you might make a faithful reproduction or you might do your own thing. Maybe you'll order one of the smaller sizes which are perfect for cushions or mini cushions, or for setting into some patchwork for a larger quilt or wallhanging. Perhaps you'll be the brave one who'll take rotary cutter to cloth and chop it up!

And the point I'm getting at? Well, I just think it's interesting that from that same starting piece of fabric we could all make a piece of work that was quite different, but that had a common core. Just imagine how this could work for collaborative of group projects. It puts a whole new slant on round robins!

A reader emailed a few days ago to ask what I thought about having digital prints (on paper) made of fibre artworks. Seems to me that this is a related idea. It's common practise for painters to have prints  made of their work that are then available for sale at a more affordable price. This has benefits both ways. Admirers of the work on a limited budget can own a limited edition print and the starving artist gets to sell the same work a number of times helping to claw back some revenue for all those hours spent on the original.

Could the same work for us textile artists? How does printing a textile or fibre piece onto a piece of paper to be framed affect the impact of the work? Does it become too distant, too separated in terms of technique, scale and presence? Maybe.

But! Prints of textile works printed onto fabric as limited runs. Hmm, seems to make perfect sense don't you think?

"I don't need to sell my soul/He's already in me". I Wanna be Adored, The Stone Roses.


  1. I saw some work printed on paper of textile art/embroidery, and honestly it was so hard to tell the difference. I could see the warp and weft, every stitch. It makes it more affordable than the original, and in limited number makes both of them retain their speciality.

  2. I purchased a few original watercolors and I have purchased prints. It all depends on the monthly budget and how much I love something. I think by providing a variety of quality products bridges the gap for those who can afford the original, and those who want to support the artist by whatever means possible. I know that the cloth I have purchased from you has deeper meaning than cloth purchased off the bolt. I remember you discussing it on DMTV, or watched Linda use the inspiration from a photo for sketchbook work and then a quilt. It is like using an ancestor's thimble, or piece of cloth from a special dress, it has deeper meaning. I have yet to make anything of it, but it is on the worktable waiting for inspiration. Someimtes just looking at the fabric inspires something totally different, but inspiration all the same. Not selling out at all, just broadening your audience.

  3. Love your thought process AND your quilt AND your prints!!!! Great post!! Will purchase more when we get back home after our winter away!!!

  4. Funny you should bring this up Laura. I recently was in a group exhibit in our local library. Three people wanted to buy my piece; it was a nice problem to have. It is a photograph I took of a totem pole in Northern BC and I printed it onto fabric and incorporated it into a large 'whole cloth' and stitched back into it and then painted back into it with oil sticks . So I suggested that I could do two more 'on a theme' so to speak. I have completed two more and each time something new and exciting turns out! Everybody was happy and I made two more sales because of it. Here is a link to the first piece that caused all the stir! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=719YDRSpFXQ


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