Eclipse • Quilt #189
Four-in-Art, Series Four: Light
Click to enlarge any photo.
This is the final post of our Four-in-Art Art Quilt group.
Our group had its genesis when I saw the Twelve-by-Twelve group at a quilt show. Rachel and I emailed back and forth about maybe trying to make some art quilts. I think we had done tons of regular quilts, and were looking for something new. The idea was to put out a theme, create a quilt around the theme and maybe try a new technique while we were at it. It started with just four quilters who wanted to try something, so we called ourselves Four-in-Art, and I made up a logo, incorporating the idea of four:
Sometime later, we added four more quilters, then switched the scheduling to four times a year, so we were still Four-in-Art. We created a blog to post our quilts, for once you archive, you are real.
We took turns coming up with the overarching theme for the year, then again, turns for the quarterly challenges. The challenges are, from the upper left: Queen Anne’s Lace, Tree(s), Fire, Owl. It was liberating to craft this way, without getting out too many rulers or drafting things on the computer (see below for a glimpse of my journal).
Year 2: Urban Quarterly Challenges (from upper left): Maps, Structure, Landmarks, Contrast, Light (we seem to like this topic).Year 3: Literature — We could choose what segment of literature to focus on. Some did a series of novels, Nancy did a series of children’s books’ titles, which she then donated to her local library, and I did a series of poems. I love the poems, pretty much hate these quilts, for a variety of reasons. Year 4: Color, and the challenges (again, from upper left): Microscopic, Music, Purple Passion, and I’ve Got the Blues.
And this year’s, with the yearly theme of Light. The quarterly challenges were: Shimmer, Light in the Darkness, Stained Glass Shadows, and Illumination.
It’s very satisfying to notice the growth, the steps backward, the consequence of leaving things to the last minute, and how having enough time impacts what you can create. I also learned new techniques, new ways of doing things, new ways to incorporate design beyond the grid and have it mean something.
A few pages from my notebook/sketchbook. It really helped to keep one of these, and not just for the journaling. I was often able to arrive at an idea for my quilt through drawing out (that old mysterious hand-brain connection) and writing out my feelings about the theme and the challenge.
(I came back in later and pasted in the four quilts we did under that theme.)
It was also a place to keep patterns, those bits and pieces of paper that led me to the final quilt, as well as notes and thoughts while on the run:
Pages about this quilt (the second page is digitally pasted on top of the first). You can see the rejected ideas.
This little quilt, Ted and Maurice at Lorinc Pap Ter, is my favorite, not only for the idea of Contrast which it expresses (and was our challenge for this 12″ square quilt), but also because I learned how to print photos onto fabric [making my own photo-ready fabric, not buying it] and had a great time doing this.
I have more than one that qualifies for the Least-Favorite-Maybe-Even-Hate, so I won’t tell you which ones. But I can share the why: when I was trying to be too “artsy” and didn’t let the idea drive the design, or when I forced the design, or when I was new at this and just had no clue how to execute the idea.
I used to have a dedicated page for all the Four-in-Art quilts, but recently I was cleaning out around here and filed them away in the Master Index to my quilts. Now they are all on the 200 Quilts page, making them easy to find. Slowly I’m going through the posts, adding the tag “Technique” to those pages that show how I tried a new way of doing things, or a new method. I hope they will be helpful for you (use my search engines to the right–Wordpress has outstanding search capability).
It’s been a wonderful journey, these past five years, and my hat is off to those who started — and stuck — with me: Rachel and Betty. They were some of the best companions to have alongside me as I traveled this road. Other travelers were Leanne (SheCanQuilt), Anne (SpringLeaf Studios), Amanda, Carla, Jennifer, Nancy (Patchwork Breeze), Simone (Quiltalicious), Susan (PatchworknPlay), and Camilla. Finally, Catherine (Knotted Cotton) and Janine (Rainbow Hare), who were also members, will be carrying this art quilt group forward, through their Endeavorers. Click on their links to be taken to their blogs. And thank you for reading this WHOLE thing.
Now, please enjoy the final round of quilts for the Four-in-Art group!
Betty Blogpost on Four-in-Art
All of our blocks are on our blog, Four-in-Art.