Archive for November, 2014

Thoughts on Judging and Originality

Friday, November 21st, 2014

There has been some controversy lately on QA concerning judging and originality, as some of this years top winners at IQF in Houston were pretty much direct copies of the work of other artists.    Nothing illegal there as the works were either in the public domain or used with permission. However this renders the new work NOT original as the decisions about subject, composition and sometimes color were already made by someone else.

My entry, “Jesse At The Lake” was inspired by a photo that I took myself and used artistic license to tweak the composition and the colors. All of the design decisions were original and my own. This prompted me to have another look at the judge’s sheets and all three judges marked the “Original in Design” space with a check mark for satisfactory. I feel it was very original and deserved a “+” mark. This is not a subjective decision that a judge can decide. Either it is original or it isn’t. I wonder how that space was marked on the entries in question. Entrants are required to disclose where the inspiration came from, and a simple check on that would have revealed that the works were recognizable copies and totally lacking in originality. As such they should not have been rewarded with an award in a category that requires originality.

Regional SAQA Meeting

Sunday, November 9th, 2014

Yesterday we gathered at Marnie’s house in the beautiful countryside near Overbrook and had a great time meeting new friends, sharing, experimenting with Indigo dyeing and of course, eating goodies.  Marnie had invited us earlier to come prepared to use her Indigo dye vats if we wanted to, and some came prepared to take her up on that! Including me– I had wrapped and stitched some muslin during the week leading up to the big day. This was my first attempt at shibori so I had no idea what I would get.


Marnie gave us an overview of the history of Indigo and showed us lots of samples she had done and with her guidance we began the process.  After I got home, I unwrapped mine and pulled the stitches from those that had been sewn.  That was the most tedious part!  If I do this again, I will not make such neat little stitches!  Of course they were easy to see when I was sewing but after the dye process the thread was the same color as the cloth and not so easy to see. After opening up the pieces of fabric, the designs were not so distinct, but his morning when I looked at them,  I was happy to see that gradations of color had appeared during the drying process.  They are still not finished.  They need to be rinsed to remove excess dye and ironed, but not for a week or so after they have had time to mature.   Shibouri_11_8_14

The two largest pieces are fat quarters. The first one, on the left was gathered diagonally and wrapped on the smaller pvc pipe, the other was folded and gathered and wrapped on the larger pipe.  From l-r the first piece in the bottom row is the stitched one that you see in the foreground above. The design was supposed to be a leafy vine pattern but I think I left it too long in the dye. The middle one is the piece that is draped over the pipe in the before photo. It was an easy design to sew and wrap and I think it is effective. The last one was rows of gathered machine stitches.  I have some ideas for some of it already!

It was a really fun day!!