Sunday, May 24, 2009

Back to Auditioning - Part III

While I am finishing up the Azalea Mosaic Test piece, I am still confronted with a dilemma for the full size piece. I'm not convinced that adding the same sort of machine embroidery over the large piece (which I believe is around 24 x 24 inches) will do anything but detract from its strong graphic lines and colors. Yet a little voice keeps asking if it doesn't need more...of something, but I don't know what. I'm not sure which voice to listen to.

Sometimes dragging one's feet on these matters is a good thing. One may think it best to move along, jump in, admit it's unfounded fear holding one back from taking the next step, but sometimes it's time well spent. The subconscious works away at the problem and presents ways to approach it when you least expect it. My biggest problem here is that I need to see the effect full sized. In the last couple of days I've finally thought of ways to do that without committing thread to actual art. Above is one solution; I had a printout I was using to guide my placement of fabric squares. No reason I couldn't take colored pen to that to mimic the stitching I had in mind. It may not be full size, but it's giving me more clarity than my test piece or what's been floating around in my head.

Another thing I'm considering is using a clear overlay that can be drawn on. Tablecloth vinyl would be perfect for this, or cobbling together some transparencies to cover the entire top would be another solution.

Other thoughts that have come to mind: Just go ahead and quilt it and see what I think. Then if I feel the need to add vines, I could do it some other way. Believe it or not, I actually considered painting them on (that drawing class must be to blame for this unexpected confidence that I could successfully wield a paintbrush thus). Or perhaps they could be drawn on with a fabric marker. Hand embroidery is another possibility.

But doesn't this quilt understand that I just want to be DONE with it??? Apparently not. Definitely open to suggestions here.


RHONDA said...

While doing a course in Creative Embroidery with the Embroiderers' Guild, I was taught to use clear overlay to audition the stitching I was considering. It works well, and is a good method to use when you can't decide beween a few options.
I like the look of embroidery on this piece, but I'm wondering if the machine stitching that you're using is too small? It's looking slightly "bitty" to me. Maybe you need to go back to your original design source - the azaleas, and have another look at the leaves and branches for inspiration...?

The Idaho Beauty said...

You have the same questions as I have. The size of the stitching is what makes me think it won't work on the large piece. My "vision" was of ground cover like crown vetch running across tiles set into the ground. But this also reads as looking straight at the bushes which seems to demand larger vines. The machine embroidery just strikes me as too fiddly and distracting and I didn't think I was interested in anything that would read like actual azalea leaves. Thus my dilemma.

So I guess it's down to my intent and what looks best, and I'm about to the point of letting my ground cover just be the quilting between the squares which could also read as vines wending their way through the azalea bush. Maybe once I do that, inspiration will hit! Or I'll be happy with it as is. Thanks for your insight - it really helps.


Not sure I've anything constructive to add really, but just thought I'd say that this is looking lovely. I think the colours are perfect and your piecing is fabulous.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Um, must confess, this piece is fused applique, not pieced. And this pic is a computer generated mock-up, not the real thing, but pretty close.