Sunday, December 16, 2012

Character or Perfection

Just recently Tim Latimer posted a great article on his blog – Tim Latimer Quilts. The discussion was about whether there were right and/or wrong ways of hand quilting. My comment to Tim on the article was “Thank you Tim for this post. I do not look for perfection but I do look for character in quilts. My mother once called me a folk art quilter. That was her nice way of saying I was not very good in her eyes. Her stitches were tiny and even. Mine are not tiny and sometimes not even, but I love every stitch I put into my quilts! I am happy being a “folk art” quilter!”

To me that just said it all with any art or craft we make. That is the way I approach my dolls, weaving, rug hooking or any thing I make. I do not strive for perfection, but I do want my things to be well made/constructed to the best of my ability. 
Mostly I want my work to have character and to show my love of what I do. 
That always comes through, and it is why people buy my work. 

I have worked in a gallery with “perfect” work. Even though I appreciate and admire the craftsmanship and skill it takes to create it – it never appealed to me the way folk art or work that was imbued with the character of the maker. I once went to Folk Fest in Atlanta, Ga. Pog didn’t think he was going to get me out of the parking lot into the building because I was running around so excited to see the art cars the artists had driven to the show. When I finally went into the building I was speechless. It was a total assault on the senses. Free, joyous, colorful and awe inspiring. I don’t think I have been the same since then. That is when my characters started emerging. I don’t know whether to call them “art dolls” because they are not dolls but they are creatures with human characteristics. My sketch book is full of them just waiting to be made. I think that going to Folk Fest gave me permission to finally be myself and let my imagination run free. 

Gordo and his Crow

Mr. Needmore Snow

Sir Seamus O'Hare

Mr. Jack Rabbit

Love what you do, everything improves with practice, and let your character come through in what ever you make.  Never think you cannot do something – all it takes is the desire to want to try and the action of just doing it!!