To Paint or Not to Paint?

Author Michelle    Category Blog     Tags

I have been asked many times by other artists and customers whether I paint. The most resent time it was asked as if to say maybe I wasn’t a real artist unless I paint? My thought was, “If you only knew the challenge of trying to make something look like a painting only using ready made fabrics.” Don’t get me wrong; I love the challenge and if it wasn’t for this challenge I probably wouldn’t be creating art at all.

Maybe its not so much about the challenge of making it look painted but more about the exciting things that happen unexpectedly in the process. For example; if I were a painter I would strive to get the exact color and texture to make the piece seem as real as possible. I’m sure my pieces would be void of drama and unexpected color as I strive to get them to be “REAL”. Fabric works differently than paint. There are so many beautifully designed fabrics each with its own pattern, texture and fabulous color combinations. Its my job to chose, cut and re-position them to create something wonderful. In order for me to get the piece to look real I may reach for a fabric that is the right/same color, but it also may be designed with a wonderful and unexpected texture or even more dramatic secondary “different” color. It is the drama of these unexpected things that makes the piece sing. It is this wonderful magical thing that “happens” in each piece that I live for.

I respect fiber artists who paint. Their pieces are beautiful, but mine would not be! So….. do you paint or not and what do you enjoy about the process and results?

Look at the secondary colors and textures in this piece. I wouldn't have had the courage to add them with paint.

My next post will be about what makes a fabric fabulous. I’ll show you some of my favorites!

Related posts:

  1. My Quilt at IQF in Houston
  2. Digital sandwich?

1 Comment to “To Paint or Not to Paint?”

  • Barbara December 27, 2013 at 9:16 am

    Thank you for saying what many of us feel but don’t have the forum you have to say it. Many times I have felt “put down” by painters because I don’t paint but in my opinion it is harder to find just the right fabric in the right color and print to make something look real, than it would be to just mix paint colors and paint something. It is hard for them to understand but we art quilters all know it is true. I enjoy all art and I think that there is room for all of us to express our own ideas. Many traditional quilters resented art quilters at first and said that we weren’t “real” quilters but most of them accept us now even though they may still like there own style best. That is the way it should be, look and appreciate it all and then choose the style you feel comfortable with and want to pursue.

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