Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Pamela Allen Workshop

I took a great workshop with Pamela Allen yesterday, My Quilt, My Way. You probably know of Pamela's work. It is funky, Picasso-like, far-out and unforgettable. She has a style all her own and if you are familiar with her work, you can spot one of her quilts from across the room. She was the speaker at our NSQG meeting on Tuesday night, where she treated us to a trunk show of many of her fabulous quilts. What you may not know, unless you have met her, is that she is a lovely woman, very kind, gracious and a super teacher. She is also a hoot and a lot of fun. That may sound like a contradiction, but it's true. If you ever have a chance to take a workshop with her, do it.

Here I am puzzling over what to do next, with Pamela offering advice and Benedicte looking on. This was a very different way of working for me (and most of us) . Everything was free-cut with no marking. First we put down our background (three pieces, light medium and dark with a 10 minute limit to do it) then we put down our largest pieces and went from there. Everything was glue-sticked down, a messy technique, I thought.

This is a VERY rough beginning and has a loooong way to go. I'm not sure about the piece behind the fish, but I needed something to make it pop off the background. I may audition some more.

As in most workshops, when I get there I always have the wrong thing. I had tons of embellishments, which we never got to, and not enough of the right kind of fabric. Benedicte kindly gave me this luscious piece of hand dyed velvet for my fish, to which I added fins and tail cut from a Kafffe Fasset fabric of mine. Next I will take everything off except for the background and start hand stitching things down in layers. I rarely do hand stitching, so that will be a departure for me. It will also get ribbons and buttons and beads and stuff. I'll post the finished product.

 I'm not even sure if I want to keep the fish on this. I think that my background lends itself to a desert scene....big saguaro cactus, prickly pear cactus in bloom on the foreground......I'll see. Quite a switch, going from an underwater scene to a desert. If I don't use the fish on this, I'll use it on something else, so he won't go to waste.


Sherryl said...

Lucky you! I have taken 2 online classes with Pamela but have yet to meet her in person. I loved those classes. I have also taken a dye class with Benedicte.. she is very sweet and funny. Can't wait to see what you finish up with. It is always a fun ride.

Benedicte said...

I am so glad to be in your art, Norma! Perhaps the fish can be used elsewhere, I agree. I will not take offense!! I can't wait to see the result. I am taking my piece with me as I am traveling.

Anonymous said...

It sounds like you had a good time in your class and are glad you took it. If I had remembered that your class was this week I would have asked that you tell Pamela one of the pieces I did in her online class is hanging in the Newtown Library show. I need to email her so she can see it all done.

Carole said...

Wha-hoo!! Norma... I, along with Sherryl, took two on-line workshops with Pamela but have not met her in person, either. She is good, very patient and kind. [I need that!]...
I will watch your blog for the 'final' showing.