Sunday, June 10, 2018

Catching Up

Sometimes I honestly forget that I have a blog, and those sometimes seem to be more often then not of late. Oh Instagram... you have made it so much easier to connect and share and how I enjoy you, but I had this dear blog child long before you and do not wish to abandon her altogether! 
(Forgive me little blog child... I still love you!)

Ok, so what's new? Well, I had to get a couple of new self-portrait shots for a lovely interview, which I will share in a minute. But first, I am going to tell the truth about this above photo. (Which I think looks nice and gives me a rather casual relaxed air, yes?) So this is what you don't see... I was sitting on a low stool, in front of a bookcase where I suspended two long loops of ropes on either side from thumbtacks sticking into the right and left top corners of the bookcase. The quilts had dowel rods in their hanging sleeves and I stuck the end of one rod into one loop and the other end of the other rod into the other loop. Then I clothes pinned the two quilts together around the top middle section. Their was some slack which made them droop, so I then folded the top edges of the quilts over one of the shelves and placed some heavy books on top to take up the slack. Next, I worked to get my old little point and shoot Canon camera, (which is about as high tech as I go) at just the right height, (no tripod. Why, oh why, don't I have a tripod?) I accomplished this by using one coffee table, with one small stool on top, followed by several books, followed by the camera. Easy! I set the camera on a timer, leaned forward, pressed the button to take a picture, leaned back and smiled. I did this about 50 times and still wasn't pleased with any of the shots. Then the quilts fell down and landed on my head. Re-hung the quilts, and took about 50 more photos and voila! One self-portrait of me doing my best to look casual, relaxed and chill!

But see, all that effort was for a good reason, as I had been asked by the lovely Kim Soper of Leland Ave Studios if I would be willing to be interviewed for The Creativity Project, which is where Kim is interviewing 52 quilters over 52 weeks to get to the "Why" we quilt. If you are not already following along, I hope you check it out... both my interview and the others. Kim is doing a wonderful job and I was honored to be a part of it!

And as for creating, well, I've been doing a lot of playing around... much experimenting and just a few actual finished works. This is one of the finished works, a quilt titled "Seasons Merge".

It's machine quilted on my domestic with a a free-form baptist fan adaptation, a design which always connects me to the local Lancaster County countryside with its plowed fields and soft rolling hills.

And I also made this rather lop-sided punch needle pillow which I adore. In the hoop it looked nice and round, but I later realized that the hoop had gotten distorted by the level of tension I had used to keep the fabric taut. Now I know to look for those distortions next time!

And like I said, I really adore this pillow! It was inspired by Pennsylvania Dutch frakturs, which hold great interest for me. And best yet, when positioned at an angle on the chair, as shown above, or...

 held just right as in this second attempt at a self-portrait, 
(which went a bit smoother then the other one) 
you can't even see the lopsidedness!

And in praise of things that are lopsided, off-kilter and not perfect...

This is what makes my heart sing! I am so blessed to live an an area that reminds me daily that there is great beauty in that which is not perfect. Look for it, embrace it and celebrate it!



Edith Bieri-Hanselmann said...

Dear Victoria, I always love to read your blog Posts and I have to say your self-portrait is great! Congratulatons!
Edith from Switzerland

patty a. said...

I will have to check out The Creativity Project. Your picture is fabulous and the quilts in the background speak volumes.

Shasta Matova said...

What a great post - so much of what looks easy has a lot of work behind the scenes to make it happen. Lovely photos and projects. I am off to check out your interview.

Victoria said...

Thank you so much Edith! Your kind words, ( and all the way from beautiful Switzerland!) are most appreciated!

Thanks Patty! Much appreciated and those two quilts in the background are two of my favorites!

Thank you, Shasta and so very true! Happy you enjoyed the post!

Diane J. Evans said...

Thank you for bringing your blog-child out to play -- always good to hear from you. I'm heading over to the link to read the entries in the Creativity Project; it sounds like a wonderful and worthy pursuit by Kim. And YOU are a wonderful and worthy subject for the interview. Keep inspiring us, will you?


Gina said...

Lovely photo Victoria and good to see you back on the blog. The pillow is beautiful and it doesn't matter in the least that it is lopsided.

tutto a posto said...

I, too, think the portrait looks great as does your work. Congratulations on the interview, I will look for it.

Anonymous said...

Great portrait shots and new works. I always love you blues and reds choices and yet you photo white barns....NIce pillow too. You look cute. xox

Victoria said...

Thank you so much, Diane. As always you are most kind and I truly appreciate your ever sweet support!

Thank you so much, Gina. And I agree, the lopsidedness of the pillow is of no concern what-so-ever!
(Most days I feel a little lopsided myself!)

Thank you, Tutto for your kind feedback!

Thanks, Corrine! And yes, I do photograph a lot of white barns... something about them, although I'm not sure what it is, draws me most affectionately towards them.

Michelle @ From Bolt to Beauty said...

You would think that I got here from your Creativity Project interview, but I'm behind in reading that fabulous series from Kim Soper. Instead, I clicked through from a long-ago-bookmarked tutorial on facing quilts, and I'm happy I did. : )

It was a pleasure to learn more about your work here and on Leland Ave Studios. The fact that you draw inspiration from the Lancaster, PA, landscape speaks directly to my own quilty heart. (I'm a native of Hershey, now living in New England with pictures and paintings of barns throughout my house.) Your Objects of Creativity series, in particular, is intriguing. I love how you marry the mundane and the stitched, two bits of beauty in unexpected juxtaposition.

Victoria said...

Thank you so much, Michelle! If you are from Hershey, (yum!) then you definitely know the beauty of this area... but oh, how beautiful New England is as well! I have always been drawn to that area of the US and have often thought how much I would enjoy living there, (if only it were not for the winters, sigh). If you have or ever do use that facing tutorial, I hope you find it helpful, and I am so happy that it led you here!

Lisa J. said...

I found you through the creativity project and I am very happy that I did. I love your quilts and other projects.

Victoria said...

Thank you so much, Lisa! Very happy you found your way here!

piecefulwendy said...

I just discovered your blog because I was searching for a good tutorial on facing a quilt. I'm new to improv, and told my bloggers I was going to give facing a go, so I'm excited to try your method. Had to chuckle at the photo gymnastics. Been there, done that, except not a portrait. Yours worked out well!

Victoria said...

Thanks so much, Wendy! Hope you are enjoying improv quilting and good luck with the tutorial. I doubt you will have any problems, but if so, just shoot me an email and I will be happy to try and assist!

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