Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Positive of the Negative in Modern Quilt Design

jill here...okay, I'm running late today.  Why is it that everything seems to take longer than planned?  Once Marny got her studio all cleaned up, I just had to rise to the occasion.  Then Kathy Mack asked us to show a photo of "where we sew" for her blog so that meant real business!  I been busy with that cleaning thing! The tab at the top will link you to Pink Chalk's Studio tour.  Needless to say, we'll keep you posted as to when we're on.  Did you know its really hard to sew in a clean space?  Well, sort of...

You'll note that this week's blog is a follow up from last week's start using the "Learning Curve".
 I went to Linda's site and her description of how to sew the curve.  She sews with the larger piece on top (different from my tutorial).  I tried it and had better success with the smaller convex piece on top.  Just goes to show you, there are lots of ways to get from point A to B.  Testing curves and finding your comfort zone is important.

So this little experiment was constructed to help understand negative space.  Designing is always a learning experience for me, so I'll share some of the process.  Negative space is the space that is not the subject.  In our designs, we like to use a lot of negative space.  It gives the eye a place to rest and brings emphasis to the subject.  It's our interpretation of modern...clean and uncluttered.  In this case, the subject is the quarter curve.  The background  and subject color changes, moving the focus.  Originally, I had fabricated some of the blocks with a high contrast analogous print. I decided the print demanded so much attention that it was distracting to the basis of the design.  So I moved ahead with white, yellow and two other values or orange and yellow orange.  The idea was to create a small project; one that  suggested circles with some negative spaces left to the imagination.

This shows adding the true orange.  It seemed overpowering
 in the background position.  It was voted off the island.
Did you know that a little yellow goes a long way.  I love yellow, its happy and bright but it seems effective in smaller doses.  The yellow oranges  and orange help "tone" it down.

Testing out other settings...this one seems too balanced with a
focus in the middle, too predictable, maybe too sketchy.

Moved the focus from the center and added one more yellow background,
distributed the orange value, engaged two edges.  Time to call it good and sew together.
These curves are not quarter circles so decided to add sashing...
another opportunity.

Entertained the idea of using one of these prints as a sashing.
Decided it would be about line and not negative space.
Voted to use the white as the sashing

Completed (or not) project with 1" finished sashing.
It's a strange size but I like the sketchy puzzle.
There are lots of opportunities for the quilting thing.
Any ideas on how to quilt?  Let's talk before next Tuesday (meaning I'd like to hear your opinions)!


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Your use of white for the sashing is what makes this design work and achieves your goal of playing with negative space. Brava!


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