Art Quilt Adventures

Students were back today for another instalment of Art Quilt Adventures. After the class Linda asked me if I thought it had gone well and I suddenly had a panic moment that the students might have expected to actually make a quilt! Needless to say that while some fabric did come out, there was no cutting or sewing done in the class. Why?

My aim with these classes is to help the students make the art quilts that they want to make. I think three things are needed - ideas, design and technique. Ideas must always be the students own, technique is easy to come by, it's design that's the tricky one. Knowing what to do and why, understanding why a design 'works' and why another doesn't, that's what I think is often the step that's not covered so much, and the one that we've been tackling bit by bit in our Adventures. If you can understand composition, colour, balance, rhythm, harmony, line and all of the other elements and principles of design then you can apply them to whatever you're doing from painting to art quilt. So for now, the technicalities of making a quilt and some of the self imposed limitations that that can create are set aside.

Today we worked on honing our critical eye. Learning to identify why an art work is successful and keeping that in mind when working on our own pieces with composition being the main concern. All of the students are working independently on their own self-chosen themes and each have different end goals.

Quiltmaking is a slow process and I think that can sometimes hinder the design process. To speed things up we explored design using screenprinted drawings. They are fast and free and I just love how they enable compositional ideas to be developed so easily. Very quickly the pinboards filled up with lots of exciting ideas.

Of course the aim of the game is to end up with something that is either a design for a quilt, or is a quilt, so some students also printed onto fabric or explored ways for working onto paper so that it could be stitched.

Each student went home with piles of printed papers which I hope they'll enjoy cutting up and drawing and painting into. All with a critical eye of course!

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  1. Thanks for this week's DM TV, I had been exploring making a gelli plate too and your video was a great help

  2. I love the work you're students have produced, it does look like they had a great adventure.


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