Sunday, February 12, 2012

Emergence

Okay, time for the big confession -- somehow I had it in my mind the quilt was suppose to be a landscape orientation instead of portrait and just realized this morning that I was wrong.  I'm not sure where I got that idea.  It must have been the fact that I was so busy last November when we were setting this challenge that I didn't read the details carefully.  I have had it wrong in my head for the last three months.  I guess I just couldn't be trusted to switch from a square to rectangle.  So here is my quilt, turned on its side.  This quilt really wanted to be vertical, but I forced it to be horizontal.  So, just imagine the quilt with the color coming from the top downward. 


I struggled a bit with the whole idea of Metamorphosis.  I was trying to capture all of it in my head and I couldn't come up with a concept. I thought about a quilt showing the stages of a frog from tadpole to adult.  I thought about the work of M.C. Escher and perhaps showing one shape changing into another.  I then realized I was trying to show to much.  I didn't need a wide angle, but could focus upon one little detail.  I decided to focus just upon the moment of emergence--the moment the butterfly comes out of the cocoon.

This quilt is the result of a bit of trial and error and I now see there will be least another trial.  I'm sure working in a sketchbook would have been beneficial, but I skipped that step and went straight to fabric.  My first thought was color emerging from darkness in the center.  Instead it just looked like some strange hump projecting from the side of the quilt.  After taking a break from it, I realized it needed to be the cocoon breaking open and the color coming out.  I set the first quilt aside and started on this one.  I quilted the background with gold spirals and painted it with a rainbow of colors.  I then added the black and gray fabric around the edges.  At first I had the color emerging upwards, but it just didn't look right.  I double checked some photos on google and realized that cocoons hang upside down and the butterfly emerges from the bottom.  I simply flipped the quilt around and kept going.  I hand stitched the gray fabric with embroidery floss and wrapped the edges around the back.  Hand sewing through the densely quilted, painted fabric was a bit of a challenge--my fingers still look a little rough from the process.  I added the circle beads and finished the colored edge with seed beads.


I now see this quilt becoming a series as I finish the first I started and remake this quit the way it should have been!

13 comments:

Diane Perin Hock said...

Nikki, Even though you were working on this from a horizontal perspective, I think it works quite nicely in vertical! I love the texture you got in the dark cocoon part. And the color and shapes and circles emerging from that darkness are wonderful. It looks like there's so much beautiful contrast (the bright colors, swirling quilting, smooth button circles) against that crinkly dark. I will look forward to seeing this in person one of these days!

Helen Conway said...

No its OK Nikki... Its formatted for the ipad. Even when I try to turn it back to horizontal it shifts back to verticle. meant to be :)

Terri Stegmiller said...

Oh how beautiful you portrayed those colors and the circle shapes are the icing for me. I'm having no troubles at all with how it looks set vertically...but if your vision tells you that you must reconstruct it, then you should feel free to do that.

Karen said...

I like it vertical also, and all the vibrant colors and beads really do look like an emerging butterfly

Brenda Gael Smith said...

Everybody, you MUST click on these images to see the detail in the larger versions. As a viewer coming fresh to the piece, I think the vertical orientation works too (in fact, I prefer it to the horizontal version which looks kind of upside down to me). Those butterflies get into all kinds of contortions as they emerge.

Kristin L said...

I really like the bubbly effervescence of the buttons and rainbow colors. I'm giggling a little that the quilt was telling you to go portrait orientation even as you were convinced it needed to be landscape. I love the colors and textures and would be very interested to see how it all works vertically.

Deborah Boschert said...

Wow. The detail is just amazing. I got a nice look when I clicked and then clicked again for a magnified view. I especially like the loose blanket stitched black edge contrasted with the beaded edge. The painted progression is beautiful and as always, I love your mastery of the quilting before the painting. Do you dye those buttons? They match so beautifully!

Carol said...

Interesting how you thought of Escher. I am always looking for mathematics to burst through the joy inherent in your work.

Gerrie said...

The emergence from the cocoon is so vibrant and happy. What a great idea. I think it works in the vertical position. It is you, but a little different - maybe it is the new dimensions. Love the beading.

Françoise said...

Love the vibrant colours, and Brenda is right, the detail images are incredible. I also think the quilt works perfectly in the vertical orientation.

Terry said...

Nikki, I know you were distressed by your orientation mistake, but really, it is kind of funny! Surprised you were the only one--we had so many ideas in the air when we came up with the guidelines. Like others, I like it very much in either orientation. It has a very magical quality. Without the cocoon explanation it still has a sense of something dramatic and amazing happening. I love those buttons so much!

Nikki said...

Thank you everyone to being so kind. I'm still planning on remaking the quilt, mostly because I want to see it. I'm hoping the third time will be the charm. Yesterday after getting off the computer I immediately started free motion quilting as a way of dealing with my frustration.

Today at work I discovered my third mistake (this one easily fixed, luckily) in the last few days, so hopefully the streak is over and I can keep everything straight for a while.

kirsty said...

Can I add my name to the list of those who prefer it vertical? It's amazing! The black/gray is so much like a cocoon and the beads are butterfly scales without a doubt.