Make Over

Get out the rotary cutter. Sometimes the best thing to do with a piece that isn’t so good, is to visualize cutting it up, and then have fun doing it!  Since you didn’t like it anyway, nothing is lost. Making artwork is always a risk, so I say, go for it.

Abstract Figure
Abstract Figure
Modern Diagnosis, 59 X 29, $610
Modern Diagnosis, 59 X 29, $610

I cut ‘Abstract Figure’ into strips and added a few new strips to create ‘Modern Diagnosis’.

I have also saved the ‘good bit’ of many pieces by cropping off most of it. A small jewel is better than a not so good larger piece. Sometimes the good bits can be combined.

I have transformed a boring horizontal abstract garden piece into a beautiful vertical piece with Asian overtones. In that case I reused almost all the cut up pieces again and created just one new bit to add to the others when shuffled and reassembeled. Nothing lost, everything gained.

I recently took a piece that was pleasing but seemed unfinished, and created a strong supporting cast of color and proportion for it. In doing so it also was turned on it’s side. The first piece was called My Mother’s Skirt, because I used fabric from a striped linen skirt of Mom’s. It was a landscape that related to Wyoming hills and sky. It is the center square area of the new piece called Rain. The miracle and drama of rain on the plains still relates to Wyoming, but in a fresh way.

Rain, 61 X 31, $700
Rain, 61 X 31, $700
Rain Detail
Rain Detail

Another recent Make Over piece was first called Together Here. The tree shadows ended up looking too regular, and I was also bothered by the bottom heavy composition and the one shadow coming out of the top of the man’s head. The reason that I had been inspired to use this image to begin with was the nice connection of dog and person and the feeling of calm. I like the color palette very much.

Together Here 46 X 35 , sold
Together Here 46 X 35
Singular, 40 X 36, $800
Singular, 40 X 36, $800

I got out the rotary cutter and sliced away. I reassembled the bits using most of the original square inches of quilt. I added and substracted fabric in a few places. I scribbled with pastel sticks and markers. The changes put the calm figures in the middle of a some what chaotic storm. The idea and feeling of the piece have changed, but not completely. Life is often spinning fast, but we can still find our anchor in one another. The new title is Singular, because the man and dog relationship is unique in time and space.

Rain and Singular are both nurturing contemporary images.

Written by Joan Sowada Art

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