Friday, February 27, 2015

Out of Left Field

"New Zealand: Pukeko" ©2015, 9" x 27"
Confession, Diane, my piece has nothing to do with baseball, beyond the fact that it was something that took place in a field on a sunny day.  I did totally embrace the play idea, though, and had a wonderful time with it, and thank you very much for that…….not that it started out that way.

I had the great good fortune to be invited to accompany Betty on a teaching trip to the Quilt Symposium Manawatu in New Zealand last month.  Planning to be away, I thought to bring some things with me to work on the Play Ball Challenge.  As it happened, I didn't use any of them, but instead, participated in Lisa Walton's "Permission to Play" class.  A real "freeing" class - we painted and dyed and sun printed, and stamped and stenciled, and did various and sundry other things to lots of squares of cotton and bits of velvet.  At the end of the second day, there was a stack of a dozen pieces of unrelated fabrics that I had no idea what I might do with.

Ta-da!  I actually used every single piece I made!  First, the pieces of fabric were divided by value (the color kind :), then sewed them together in randomly cut strips creating 4 different strip-pieced fabrics to work play with. In the interest of trying more new things, I attempted freeform curves.  It came out really cool - a kaleidoscopic, colorful world!  This was layered it with spatter-painted organza and quilted.

And, of course, there had to be birds!  The birds were from photos taken on the trip to New Zealand.  Pukeko is the Maori name for the purple swamphen. Our very patient host in Golden Bay, Liza Eastman, stopped the car here and there (and everywhere) so I might take pictures of them - but they were never very close.  Still, their shape and posture was so distinct and the chase was a memorable part of the trip.

"New Zealand: Pukeko", detail
The pukeko were made with collaged crumpled tissue paper and matte medium on crinoline.  I trimmed them and fused them to the quilted background and then stitched them.  It was all great fun, the whole process - - and I know I am better at this than baseball!

In closing Viewpoints 9's second cycle, I have to say this is the best team I have ever played with!  Thanks, everyone, for a winning season!  I'm looking forward to the next cycle and the prospect of getting to see each of you in person at some point over the next year!


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Alicia! I totally enjoyed creating this and experiment.

  2. It really looks like you had fun with this piece, Martha, and the result is wonderful. I particularly love the patchwork background....oooh, that gives me an idea! Just gotta say, the VP9 pieces are so inspiring, thanks for the look into all your worlds!

    1. Hi Andie, thanks so much. This really was a fun piece - and I totally embraced the playing part. Thanks for checking us out and commenting. Everyone's world is so unique and intriguing. I learn so much from this project. Hope all is well with you!

  3. Looks like both you AND the swamphens had a ton of fun! Capturing the spirit of the challenge perfectly.

  4. Thanks, Diane, and thanks for such a great challenge. It was great fun to create something spontaneously!