Friday, October 11, 2013

Guesses and Messes

Last week marked the beginning of a new free-motion quilted landscape, this time using a photo--which involved enlarging, a lot of tracing, and the making of twenty thousand million pattern pieces. (Ok, actually 26. It just seemed like a lot more.)



Then came choosing the fabrics--one of the most fun and yet most frustrating parts in the process of making a landscape quilt. Half of the time, there aren't enough choices; the other half, there are too many. In this photo, folded fabrics are being auditioned for the trees (one of which was accidentally left out at first...yep, screw-up number one...that's when you know you're on your way! :)
Again, these were just auditions at this point...except for that tree on the left. I was so sure it would be the perfect foreground tree, that I went on and cut it out with the pattern piece--a good 30 inches long. Yep, trial and error number one (as opposed to screw-up number one)--the tree just doesn't stand out enough. It blends in a little too well with the stone wall, which is supposed to be far behind it.

So that particular tree was rejected. But in landscape quilting, rejects are never wasted; just saved for a future project. The replacement tree in the next photo is much darker, which is important, because usually the elements in the foreground need to be darker than those in the background, for the sake of depth and perspective. (If you're not convinced of this, stand on a hill somewhere and look out over the distant landscape. Generally, trees, mountains, other hills, and even buildings will appear progressively lighter as they near the horizon.) There are exceptions, such as that skinny tree, which needs to be either very dark or very light in order to contrast with the stone wall. Lighter would probably be better there--it's a bit stark looking even if it is skinny. 


 Meanwhile, the studio is gloriously messy, as happens when you're deeply immersed in a new project--too much creativity flying around to pay all that much attention to cleanup. And this photo doesn't even include the huge pile of pattern pieces lying willy-nilly all over a tabletop. 



A couple of new elements were added today:


The curling silhouette (because I ironed him onto paper-backed fusible) makes it look like the guy is trying to escape hell fire, but that will change as the light behind him gets toned down and window bars are put on top of him. Then he'll just look all brooding and mysterious as he watches the woman approach on the path. At least that's the plan.

Hooking up with Leah Day over at FMQ Friday and Sarah Craig at Whoop Whoop Fridays. Among other things, Leah has included a link to instructions for a method of finishing your quilt's raw edges without binding on top. Sarah has announced the winner of the traveling stash and is featuring some linkups to other folks' work. Check out the hookups at the bottom of both Leah's and Sarah's posts--as always, a super booster shot of inspiration.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Linda

18 comments:

  1. I am really looking forward to seeing this quilt progress- it looks amazing so far!

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    1. Thanks, I'm really having fun with it!

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  2. You have achieved great depth on this work already. The Thumb nail on Leah Days sight shows it perfectly. Keep up the great work.

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    1. Oh good, sometimes I'm not too sure about those thumbnails, so that's good to hear. Thanks, Joni!

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  3. Only 26? It looks like there would be more and it's coming along nicely. It's not easy to get the right scale of stones and the fabrics you have for the stone walk, wall and building play together beautifully. You must have quite the stash of stone fabric. I am very envious of your studio - that table for laying out the piece is really nice.

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    1. Thanks, Carol. You know, a recount might be in order, because it definitely does look like more than 26! lol I grab a fat quarter of any stone or brick fabric I run across. Oh yeah, that cutting table has been a godsend. I bought it back in '88 or so, and it's even great for wrapping Christmas presents because the height is so perfect, no backache--and it's on lockable casters and both ends hinge down for easy storage. One of the best buys ever. I've seen similar ones lately, but they don't appear quite as heavy-duty as the old ones. Still probably work just great, though.

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  4. Very cool! Its coming along beautifully and will be quite a piece when you finish up. :)

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    1. Thank you, Susan, I sure hope so. I just had to share your spider bag on my FB page, hope that's ok!

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  5. I'm working on a scenic quilt panel. It's a challenge for me. You are obviously an expert! Gorgeous work!
    Pamelyn of pamelynspostings.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks, Pamelyn, but if I ever become an expert, I'll have to quit, as the learning process is the most fun for me! I just viewed your apple core quilt, and have got to tell you, I had no idea you could use pure color intensity to convey the appearance of light the way you've done. Another awesome lesson for me--thank you for sharing!

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  6. I love it! This year I would like to try my hand at trying a landscape quilt! You are so inspiring. I can't wait to see the finished product!

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    1. I hope you do, and that you'll share your progress, too. Thank you, that is really good to hear, as I'm constantly inspired by the work of so many other landscape quilters. Wonderful to know I can give back in some way!

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  7. A really impressive start. Thanks for sharing your process.looking forward to your progress.

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    1. Thank you Suzanne. I didn't realize how much fun piecing from a photo could be--even if it is extra work!

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  8. This is already looking incredible! I loved what you did with the picture. You added just the right female figure. Now your fabric picture is looking to be super fantastic. I am so excited to watch you create this masterpiece.

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    1. Hi Heidi, thank you! I've made some progress in the last couple of days and hope to share more at the end of the week. Pretty soon it will be time to dismantle the entire layout and begin gluing/fusing pieces down permanently.

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  9. Oh, my goodness! I'm going to enjoy surfing around your blog (found you through Freemotion Friday). What a wonderful start of a quilt. Can't wait to watch it progress.

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    1. Lyn, thank you, I'm having a lot of fun with it. Glad to meet yet another person in the FMQ Friday community!

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