Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Journal Quilt 2007

I'd thought I sent it off to Houston without taking a picture of the finished quilt. Imagine my surprise last night- I was backing up my photo files to an external hard drive I just got, and came across a picture of my completed Journal Quilt! I can't believe I forgot about taking it!!

Anyway, here it is, along with my statement. The clear picture taken in Houston is courtesy of my friend Suzanne, who had a quilt juried into the show.

Beverly J. Hart
Spanish Fork, UT


Creative Quilting techniques used: solvent transfer using Citra-solv (p. 16); Shiva paintstiks over a rubbing plate (p. 201); photos changed to grayscale, and inkjet printed on fabric (p. 179).

This is my third year in the Journal Quilt project, and I knew I wanted to do something entirely different from my previous quilt pages, which were nature based or abstracts. I played with several ideas, then decided to do a ‘scrapbook’ page that incorporated images of me growing up until now, and documents from both my childhood and adult life. Since my mother had saved every report card I ever got, among other normal childhood documents, I had plenty of material to work with.
I’ve had a rich life, with its share of twists and turns, and wanted the quilt to reflect that. I pieced the background using my hand dyed fabric, then did the text transfers and Shiva paintstik rubbings. I thought long and hard about the quilting, but decided that contour lines, like those on the maps, would be very appropriate. They not only symbolize the changes our life can take when we least expect it, but the ups and downs too. We won’t mention the lines you can see showing on my face in the more recent photos!
I printed out the photos, then fused them to the red backing fabric and edged them with decorative stitching. I made little quilts of each photo, since I wanted them to stand our more than a simple one layer of fabric would. They were sewn by hand onto the quilt. The last touch was the beading, which I didn’t even know it needed until the very end.
The entire process turned out to be some things I hadn’t expected- it invited introspection about where my life has been, and where I want it to go from here. It helped me bring closure to some painful events of the past three years, and to focus more on the future. It may not be art, but it is definitely is a piece of me. I’ve learned new techniques to add to my toolbox, and actually gotten good at some of them! But mostly, I hope my children will value you it as a part of me to be shared with future generations.

I've participated in the Journal Quilt Project for the last three years, and found it to be both therapy and a wonderful learning experience. I'm grateful to Karey Bresenhan for initiating the project, and giving it the kind of exposure in the quilting world only she can do. I've grown as an artist and a quilter, been exposed to other artists' work, and perhaps started thinking "bigger" than I would have without it. Thank you Karey and Quilts Inc!!


Nellie's Needles said...

Wonderful! What an heirloom.

Nikki said...

How wonderful to use the journal quilt to reflect on your life.

Linda Teddlie Minton said...

Beverly, I love your Journal Quilt! Wasn't this the most wonderful project?

Also, would you please email me privately ... ... regarding the Pay It Forward game? Thanks!

margaret said...

During the making, we have time to listen to the stories we're telling ourselves ... each of those photographs must have dozens of stories behind it!

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Anonymous said...

I just found Citra Solv through their site, now I must try this right away! So beautiful!