This week I did spend a lot of time in the studio finishing my old oak tree, which at the moment is named "Invitation" because of the welcoming bench beneath it. The first time I met this oak tree in the Ottawa Arboretum, there was a pastel green bench beneath it, beckoning visitors to stay a while and enjoy the massive canopy of oak branches. It was early spring when the leaves were barely budding, so the tree was dark and stark, like in the finished quilt. You can see a close-up of the bench in the second photo. I did cut a curve between sky and land, to make the dividing line less stark, but in the end it seems that most of that curve ended up behind the tree, leaving the line still a bit too strong.
Invitation, Detail, 2013
One thing I will be doing this year, is having the following work, "End of Days", travelling in SAQA's Metaphors of Aging show. I was thrilled to find out two weeks ago that the piece is one of 39 quilts accepted, out of a total of 160 entries, to travel in this show. The two venues so far confirmed are Festival of Quilts, Birmingham and Johannesburg Quilt Festival, South Africa.
End of Days, 2012
On the other hand, I also learned in the last couple of weeks that none of my three entries (below) to Fantastic Fibers at the Yeiser Arts Center in Paducah, Kentucky were accepted. Only 54 of the 700 entries (a very competitive show) were accepted, and mine were not among them.
Curtain Call 2, 2012
Red Stool, 2011
Red Stool Macro, 2012
That means I now have three works I can use to apply to other shows.
I feel that I get better outcomes by sending a few pieces a year to juried shows internationally than by having a solo show locally. I think a solo show locally can be very important when you are trying to establish yourself as a serious artist in your city, or if you are trying to make a living selling your work. However, to expand my teaching I need to have my work out in the world. So like previous years, I will continue to enter juried shows, although I may enter fewer this year. One other thing I will definitely not be doing is having a work in the Canadian Quilters Association's National Juried Show. Very simply, I screwed up and missed the deadline because it was a bit earlier than usual this year. I feel that this is normally an important venue to show at as a Canadian teacher who makes the bulk of her living in Canada.
Another thing that is happening here in my world is that we've adopted a new kitty. Isn't she pretty? Poor thing almost froze to death on New Year's Eve, before Cat Rescue Network found her and placed her in a foster home. We applied to adopt her, were approved, and she came to live with us today. She is supposed to be a companion for our dear old Kissabelle, our only remaining cat. Unfortunately, today, Kissabelle is NOT amused by the scent and sight of a new cat in HER house. We will have to tread carefully and introduce them slowly.