I love how I start in on a quilt with an clear and planned idea of where I'm headed and end up in a slightly different place. This is the joy of art. The colors are chosen, the wave is cut and ironed and I have started stitching it down. Looking at the fabrics I lined up to use, especially knowing which were my expected favorites, I'm enjoying looking at which ones were and weren't used. The wave has a life of it's own. I used lots of fabrics with dots and "bubbles." The wave grows from the darkest, most saturated and even muddy teals up through mid-hues and into lighter, clear-color blues and aquas. It really has the look and feel of water, a cresting, Japanese inspired wave. I pulled it up out of years of summers on Cape Cod - my Mom and Dad's summer home and finally the site of my Mother's retirement. I have spent countless hours watching the ocean move, and spill. And now that I needed to create a wave, it came mostly from feeling; the smell of salt air, the glint of sun reflecting off a breaker, the feel of sand between my toes.
Sewing is a challenge, even though most of it so far is just long straight lines from left to right and back again. My Bernina, which I love for the constancy of it's satin stitch has a rather short arm. I am rolling and unrolling like crazy. It's a bit of a challenge! As I look at the wave on my work wall or taking up almost all of my work table, I am overwhelmed by how big it is.
I'm not even going to think of the mermaids until all my wave stitching is done. Then I will drop them in on top.
Last night I got an unsolicited and very unusual complement from my husband. He is trained in art and is a jeweler by trade. He loves extreme realism in paintings and sculpture. His own drawings and paintings were exercises in extreme realism. He respects my work, but does not really have an affinity for it. He does have a good eye though, and his comment was that he thinks I am finally working on "a prize winner," as he put it. Put a smile on my face. I think he's on to something though. I am finally working from within to create this piece using everything I have come to learn about art; color, line, composition, repetition, etc. and blending these with as much of my heart and soul as I can muster.
I am working as much as I can after work on my day shifts - just trying to plug away at this to get it done in time to photograph it for entry by June 15. I must be out of my mind! Been thinking about how to use what I am learning with "Mermaids" in the next one, "Medusa." I have been collecting fabrics for "Medusa" too. Always thinking ahead! I just picked up a black and white snake scale print. I'll be hand painting over it to create stripes and diamonds on the snake skin. I'm looking forward to doing this. But for now, I have a quilt to finish and very little time to do it! Back to the sewing machine!