I’ve been looking around at a lot of modern quilters and textile artists lately as I’ve been working on my quilting skills in general and working on how to merge photography (specifically old family photographs, which I have boxes and boxes of) with textile art. Fusing my family history with the utilitarian collective history of both photography and craft arts is something that has always interested me and been a prevalent theme in my own art, and it’s always interesting to see what others are doing in this realm as well.
And that’s how I ended up stumbling on Mary Ann Tipple‘s work. She has been working with old family and found photos for almost a decade.
While her intention lies more in visual art than the utilitarian aspect of quilting (she transfers he images using gel-medium transfer techniques and often adds hard embellishments on the final quilts), I love her sense of history and the questioning of place in her work. You can see more oft Mary Ann Tipples work at her website, Textile Art Tipple.
Here’s another palette inspired by what’s right in front of me, this one of my mom’s yard. Even though it’s the middle of winter, and most things seem dead, there is colour all around us.
Today I’m taking a break from the TASHEN book cover inspired palettes and getting inspired by my surroundings. I went to visit my mom a few weeks ago and spent the rainy gray Pacific Northwest weekend walking along the rocky beach, all bundled up in galoshes and my rain coat. So here’s a colour palette inspired by what I always think of when i hear the word “beach.”
Today’s inspiration is from TASCHEN‘s retrospective of Linda McCartney‘s photography.
I’ve been getting more and more into quilting lately, and made a slew of baby quilts of the last few months for the slew of friends having babies this spring. But I’ve been getting really bored just making the same old patterns and quilting the same way over and over again.
So, being inspired by Natasha Kerr and my plethora of family photographs, I have decided to start a quilt incorporating my favorite picture of my grandmother, Grace, and her husband, Hank (also referred to a Poppy by my mom and her sister). This will probably take me about a year or so to complete, and I’ll keep the quilt on the small side.
To start things off, I’ve made a mood board.
The photograph of my grandparents will be the the central focus in the quilt, but I also wanted to incorporate their life farming in central Washington (Poppy grew wheat and Grace ran a small iris farm). I also added some fabric swatches to the board as well. It all seems like a good place to start, and next I’ll be working on my color palette. Stay tuned!
WATCH THIS: On Location: Natasha Kerr from Victoria and Albert Museum on Vimeo.
This!!! As an artist- mainly photographer- but also an artist that has a great respect for, and practices “crafts” art, and also as someone whose praxis orbits around family and nostalgia I am blown away by these pieces. And it gets the wheels in my mind churning. I honestly haven’t had much time for my own art in the last year, but I am starting to remember I need to make time for my art if I truly believe in its importance. I have a lot of materials that are waiting for me, passed down from generations before. Now I just need to draw a plan and lay the groundwork. And Kerr certainly inspires me to start that process.
There’s just something about old photos that I love, especially when I walk into an antique or junk shop and find a box filled with discarded memories. Who were these people? What were they doing? Sometimes there are clues, left in handwritten notes on the back of the photographs, begging a quest that will never be fulfilled. They are mysteries, and, most likely, they will never be solved. And this leaves the possibility for endless stories to be created, sparked by someone elses forgotten past.