Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Most recently, as I gained use of my arms and ability to sketch I began to think about my own artwork and how to create better art. It was in part prompted by a discussion on one of the e-mail lists I belong to. I developed four (4) key questions for myself:
1. Do I have an artistic voice that is strong, clear, and distinctive?
2. How does my work compare to other well respected (fiber) artists in terms of having a strong artistic voice?
3. At this point has it become important to me that my work sells?
4. Of all the art I have created, are there a few that stand out in terms of excellence? If so am I still excited about that work and what can I learn from it?
I had a lot of time to think about these questions and it became clear that while I think I have a distinct style...it could be stronger and more consistent. I visualize the work of Faith Ringgold, Dorothy Caldwell, Susan Shie or Lisa Call - you know at a glance that it is their work. All are gifted successful artists, able to garner acclaim that seems to translate into sales. (I guess you now know my response to question 4, lol!)
As for my own work I had a few observations. For a long time, I have been experimenting with how I use lines and shapes to create the map-like artwork that I love to create. I've been subconsciously playing with 2 languages:
1. an "architectural" language (to be expected since I am an architect) that yielded lines and shapes that were straighter and more precise - City Grid IV.
2. vs. lines and shapes that were more organic and expressive - Labyrinth of the Hidden Goddess. See below:
What excites me about the organic language is that is allows me more freedom of expression and emotion. And it recalls maps of more ancient places, something I find poetic and inspirational. I did some research on iron settlements and the following are inspired by this study (and the quilt above on the right)...so the bottom line is that I think I have a potentially strong series. Here are some very conceptual sketches:
We'll see where this takes me. I still can't sew much and will start teaching next week at the university. As a result I won't be following up on these sketches soon.
At some point I'l post conceptual sketches for a few other series. Hope you'll visit again soon! If you've had similar thoughts about your work why not add a few comments?
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Forget about scenes of waterfalls, birds or snowflakes! I just used the "set as desktop background" function to make myself a BIG, GIANT post it note for some long range goals! Thought it would be a good way of constantly reminding myself of some objectives I've set for myself.
All I did was to create an image of the lists, ideas, even a quote from an article written by Michael James that I've been chewing over for the last few weeks.
So each time I log on or minimize my windows -- voila, there it is.....hard to ignore. (Well we'll see!)
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
One correction though- I will be teaching at Art Quilt Tahoe in November of 2011 at Lake Tahoe at Zephyr Point on the South Shore, NOT Nevada City.
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Yes, I've been thinking and thinking about what else I can offer to the fiber art workshop scene that is unique to my design background and will be valuable and interesting to teach!
Well here it is: "THE COMPLEX COMPOSITION" . I hope others will agree.
This workshop will focus on using basic principles of graphic composition used by many architects. You will learn to create rich and complex compositions from this inventive perspective using the principles of SCALE, MERGING, LAYERING/ OVERLAPPING, RANKING, AND FRAMING. Each student will create a cartographic art quilt that tells the story of a particular place.Interested? Just let me know.........
Monday, October 25, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
If you haven't ever been -- are interested in learning techniques and design thinking related to contemporary quilting -- then this is the place. I will be teaching a 2 and a 5 day class:
Session 4: Map Haiku Length 2 days
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Good news today....the quilt just sold in the Studio Art Quilt Associates benefit auction! (See row 12 the piece in the middle column)
Saturday, October 2, 2010
This beautiful book showcases more than 120 fiber art quilts from many corners of the earth.
My work is found on page 154.....I am so proud to have my work included among the art of so many artists:
Friday, September 24, 2010
It's been an excellent week.......
Kind of Cool....just signed the license agreement to have my art in the upcoming DVD film: "Why Quilts Matter"!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Just got back a wonderful trip and gave a lecture trunk show fro Amelia Island Quilt Guild! Here is a summary as of today.
1.) Trunk Show/Lecture│ Amelia Island Quilt Guild Inc. │ Sept 14, 2010,
2.) Workshop │ La Connor, Quilt Fest │ September 29 to October 2, 2011, *
3.) Workshop │ Art Quilt Tahoe │ November 6 - 11, 2011
4.) Workshops │ Quilt Surface Design Symposium│ June 13-17, and June 18-19, 2011
(click here for pdf brochure)
5.) Workshop │North Suburban Needle Arts Guild – Chicago │May 2nd & 3rd, 2012
6.) Workshop │Hudson River Valley Art Retreat: July 12 - 15, 2012
Some of my workshops are listed below:
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Monday, August 30, 2010
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
I finally took the time to write out where I wanted to be in 2011, 2012, and 2013. We'll see if this helps to make things happen. I certainly hope to see if there is cause and effect in terms of planning and achieving one's aims.....
Take a minute, click on the chart below.......any comments?
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Strategy #3 for Developing a Personal Plan for Success as an Artist: Print media and Image marketing
I've been thinking about my previous post related to Developing a Personal Plan for Success as an Artist. To tell the truth, creating print media of my work to sell was on the chart, but not on my radar screen.....until:
I had a nice little chat and nudge from Tana one of the owners of Humidity Gallery the other day. She suggested that I try to sell note cards at her gallery. So I may create some note card based on the wonderful parks in the Tallahassee area.
This is a mock up of one I may create for our beautiful Lake Ella:
We'll see.....baby steps --!
Sunday, August 1, 2010
The following chart summarizes a possible road map. I put a line through the things I have accomplished. The author has developed "7 Goal Categories":
#1: Solo exhibitions and showing in museums,
#2: Setting Prices for one's work,
#3: Print media and image marketing,
#5: Documenting yourself and your work,
#6: Selling at Festivals and
#7: Exhibits and judging.
I put a line through the areas I had completed. As you can see I have nothing to show for Categories 3 and 6, but I'm not sure I am interested in pursuing all the goals. I'll have to think on it............any suggestions out there?
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
While on hiatus from teaching and my art studio work I have decided to focus on marketing the fiber artist side of my life. So with use of my right arm, right hand and a pitiful use of my left hand - I designed two postcards. I plan to do a small mailing local campaign. My goal is get some interest in commissions from local architectural firms, interior designers, developers, and various potential private patrons. With the slow economy and the old catch twenty-two, my expectations are kind of low.....but it is still a good move on my part.
Here are the postcards. I wanted to use images of work that might be of local interest.
Friday, July 2, 2010
Why not cool off in a gallery setting and take a look at some of my work?
Check out my some of my larger pieces in the mid-town area of Tallahassee :
1020 East Lafayette Street
Tallahassee, FL 32301-4546
Their new Summer Hours are listed at the left.
On exhibit are some of my quilted maps such as Rattler Country, inspired by FAMU's campus or "A Tale of Two Campuses" based on our city's 2 great campuses. FAMU and FSU.
Or you may want to spend some time in Killearn where you can see my small format pieces at:
The Humidity Gallery
1355 Market Street #A-3
Tallahassee, FL 32312
Please take a look at my "Tallahassee Park" pieces.
I have created a series of cartographic quilts about several local parks such as Lake Ella, Lafayette Park and Dorothy Oven Park where some of you may have tied the knot!
Monday, June 14, 2010
The piece is called Lifeline and I had designed it a few years ago, after a year long hiatus from creating art. It represented my "lifeline" into making quilts again. Not sure why but I had never entered into into any venue until this one came around.
But much to my surprise it won 2nd place. And, it was judged against all types of art -- sculpture, painting, etc.....
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Went to the studio space at the School of Architecture yesterday. I needed a table large enough to use for squaring up my latest quilt.
Had a eureka moment.........one of the arcjotecture students from the Spring semester had left behind a drafting table. I was able to use it to square up the quilt, it was narrow enough to fit on the table.
How convenient it was to be able to use the table and the parallel bar to draw parallel and perpendicular lines along each side of the quilt!
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
A list of chosen artists follows:
de Vos Ruth .
Jenison Leslie Tucker
Smith Lura Schwarz
Valya Valya C
Willoughby Scott Jayne
Woock Sandra Blue
Sunday, May 16, 2010
The exhibit entitled "3 Voices" was excellent. The work of my fellow artists Katherine Allen and Kent Williams was stunning. Each of us had a room of our own and the Visions staff did a great job of promoting and creating an engaging atmosphere for the opening. It was held in conjunction with the 1st Friday art events taking place on the same night.
My workshop was held the next day. Everyone had the challenge of creating a mixed media map of an imaginary place. The inspiration was haiku especially written to conjure up poetic images of a place seen from above.
When I returned home I heard from Jo and Suanne who were kind enough to provide feedback on their experience with the class. As you can see they both chose the same haiku as inspiration.
"Valerie, wanted to thank you for a wonderful class at Visions last week. I thoroughly enjoyed it and got a lot out of it. I will keep track of your class schedule and hope to take a longer class someday. Here is my finished Map Haiku."
tracings on the land /
grace monochromatic spaces /
and serene dark places.
And I heard from part Suanne as well:
I had a wonderful time in your class and learned so much. I have a much better
understanding of using paint on quilts without feeling I have to paint the whole
Attached is a finished picture of my quilt. I plan to name it "Haiku Harmony"
and mention on the back how 3 of your Haiku's inspired the quilt.
It was a joy to learn from you and I am inspired by your work."
tracings on the land /
grace monochromatic spaces /
I will post more images of work done by other students later this week..................