My posts have become sporadic because I have an ambivalent relationship with this blog. It was my first foray into social media specifically to promote myself/my work, and I’m not a self promoter. After much delay I’m now on Instagram (@patludwigquilts — follow me!!), and I’m finding that to be much more appealing. I just put up the pictures. Still trying to figure out the whole hashtag bit, but having fun with it.
But I do like writing about the creative process, and whenever I get a notification that someone signed on to follow this blog, I feel guilty about letting it languish. In my last post quite awhile ago I said I’d be back to show and tell another project from last summer’s creative retreat. So here it is, and I’m a little rusty, so bear with me.
When I made the quilt above, which was sometime in 2014, I churned out more of the small squares than ended up getting used. My general practice is to stow extra pieces and bits that I like, and I liked these, so I set them aside.
So a day came when there must not have been anything else particularly compelling to do, because this
happened, I sewed those remaining squares (in center above) somewhat haphazardly together. I added that jeans bit (pressed inner leg seams) as a border for the center square. Then started a basic strip border with other scraps.
Meanwhile, I’d been going to look at art with my very painterly friend Chuck, who is tremendously inspiring to me. He paints on his jeans … sometimes just splatter as a result of being near paint and sometimes to play with representation, like the bold rectangle above. He’d given me quite a few of these amazing pieces and initially I had no idea what to do with them.
I find sometimes I just have to start cutting. After making some pretty traditional strip rows, I wanted to draw the indigo of the jeans out, so I added short strip rows of painted jeans. Then there were the bold geometetrics on some of the legs, which stood as design elements themselves.
As an aside, Chuck sometimes gives painting workshops with jeans in Washington Square Park. The results no one wants have been passed to me.
I move the elements around until it feels balanced
And sew all pieces together, row by row, and around the square, then press the seams
And that is where I left it in February 2016 because a UPS box came from Texas …
with all of these chargers ready to be taken apart and turned into something new.
Another aside …. the something new was this
So fast forward to July 2016, when I went up to the woods for a little retreat, and this is one of the unfinished projects that came along to see if inspiration might be ready to visit
My having taken these close ups tells me I spent some time looking at the details
And I still feel excited about all the color and movement on these pieces
Because I had brought loads of denim with me, I found some darker leg pieces (Shout out to Russ Irwin!) that made a nice firm enclosure for the somewhat riotous contents
This is a big piece so it was one of those lay-it-down, smooth-it-out, pin-all-rows, pick-it-up, careful-feed-through-machine and repeat deals. But I had the place to myself … and never did take a final picture …
… so I’ll leave you with this one, which features Inspector Buddy.