I have made several online references lately about a large new series. This is a collaborative project that requires I design 25 large pieces in three years time. We are now in August of the first year! My husband keeps reminding me that the clock is ticking and what pressure I have put on myself, but I am loving the challenge and nose is to the grindstone.
Today I took another step in the eating of this elephant and put up the Defining Moments page on my website showing the first two completed pieces, which are about my maternal and paternal grandparents. I am currently stitching #3 which is about my parents and just this week prepped the fabric for #4 to begin soon. By prepping I mean that I wrote the story, created a screen, discharged dye, then painted with same screen onto the cloth.
These stories serve as the background for the series. They are semi-legible which gives the cloth and the piece a lot of depth. I’ve already discerned that the only way to do 25 in three years time is to keep moving, to start the design of the subsequent while working on the current piece.
Early this year I sewed several long strips of scraps together which have become the symbolic crosses in the first 4 pieces. Both sets of grandparents practiced devout faith and these rugged crosses made of scraps also seemed the perfect delineation between the men and the women.
Someone who recently saw the work asked why the crosses were skewed? My answer? Because I could make them that way! Lord knows, no pun intended, we need not be literal in every interpretation of our work.
I am learning so much already from this series. I’ve remembered stories from my childhood long forgotten. I learned that bigger is not necessarily better, especially when trying to cram that big boy under the needle to stitch. And I learned that with both sets of my grandparents, my parents and my own husband & I that we all had contrasting backgrounds. Opposites do attract.
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