Wednesday, February 4, 2015

imitation and inspiration


Everyone borrows inspiration. It takes a while for artists to find their particular niche.

I'm not into representational quilts ... at all. I appreciate the craft and skill! But I am not drawn to them aesthetically.

Yet I created this little piece for James's third birthday. I spontaneously copied the wrapping paper I used for his gift and pieced this small wall hanging. I needed to create something. But as a rule, I don't set out to design representational quilts. Could I create these little quilt pictures to sell? I probably could, but it's not what drives me.

At this early stage in my quilt design life I am drawn to many styles and patterns of modern quilts, improvisational or otherwise. I have always loved busy quilts, but I feel myself also drawn to low volume quilts. I love wonky ones with uneven edges and simple ones with clean lines.

I feel like I'm in a creative crisis — a fun one, but my head is spinning. As I pin quilts at Pinterest each morning, with now 1,688 quilts pinned (!), each one inspires for at least one element — color, fabrics, pattern.

Copying someone else's pattern exactly doesn't appeal to me, even with different fabrics, and yet I am so drawn to people's patterns and styles! Of course the question is how to take inspiration, and make designs that are my own.

Whatever my own is.

I have a lot to learn about design: color, value, movement.

I received more quilt books in the mail. I can't wait to share those inspirations with you.

9 comments:

  1. You are finding your own every single day, Ruth. Don't agonize too much -- just let it come!

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    1. Thank you for your encouragement, Jeanie.

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  2. All of this about quilts from you keeps impressing and amazing me, Ruth. Who would have thought a few years back that you'd be in this whole new space of creativity, imagination and inspiration. However or wherever it takes you, I will follow!! :)

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    1. I appreciate it, and you, so much. <3

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  3. To me quilts are pieces of art and quilters are like painters – creating their feelings through designs with colors and fabric. Your post made me think about the yearly quilt show at Bulloch Hall in Roswell, GA. So I just checked and it will be between March 6th to 15th, and will be the 33rd annual show. I went last year for the 32nd show. I wanted to have a post on it but there were so many beautiful quilts that I think I ended up writing 3 posts, one for each floor. Here is the link in case you did not see it: http://avagabonde.blogspot.com/2014/03/bulloch-hall-32nd-quilt-show-ground.html . Some of those quilts must take hours – I think you have to be very patient to cut the fabric carefully then piece it according to your imagination, then sewing it and all the rest. Jim’s first cousin here, who is a retired doctor from the CDC, has been quilting for years and I am always amazed at the depth of her quilts – each one totally different from the other.

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    1. Vagabonde, yes, some quilts take so much time that the quilter must be inspired and infused with enough energy to see through to the end. I do remember your quilt post. The amount of detail in some of them is absolutely astonishing.

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  4. I just posted a comment, but don't think it made it's way...so I'll do a repeat and a pardon if it shows up twice. I love quilts and absolutely adore the quilts I have today made by my grandmothers...soon to be shared in my "Storied Objects!" I think it's so wonderful that we are all inspired by each other here in the blogging world. And your number of pins on Pinterest! Wow!

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    1. Thanks for trying again, Robin. So special that you have those quilts made by your grandmothers.

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