ELAINE QUEHL, Quilt Artist, Teacher, Dyer, Designer

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Conversations Over Coffee #3 and Re-Opening

 Greetings. Here in Ontario, Canada, lockdown ends tomorrow, when we move into the first phase of our three-step re-opening. It's been a long ordeal for many people. Now that vaccines are arriving in plentiful numbers, we've been able to move ahead our timeline to get everyone vaccinated. My second vaccine will take place on June 27. 

I'd like to share the third piece in my series, "Conversations Over Coffee". The challenge was to create a white cup. I've taken some inspiration from torn paper collage artists in using fabrics with text. I know the black and white polka dots will figure in the background some way, but likely not exactly like this photo. I want to wait until I've finished a few of these collages before I decide on backgrounds. I'm pleased with the shading, but still playing a bit with the foam on the coffee.

The inspiration for my next piece will be a black and white espresso cup and saucer. So I will make use of the same set of fabrics as the above piece, but the values will be quite pronounced, rather than gradual.

In my first collage cup I used glue to adhere my collage shapes. In my second I used Lite Steam a Seam 2. This is now my preferred method. In my next post I'll share some process in prepping the fabric. I am also still playing with collage shapes. I think everyone will cut them differently and everyone's piece will show the hand of the maker.

As the lockdown went on and on and on, I found my mental health sliding a bit. Lower mood and more anxiety. But now that we are heading into a slow opening up, I'm feeling more anxiety about whether I'll be able to cope in a so-called "normal" world, after having been in isolation so long. Well OK, I did see some friends during the lockdown. That was one of my coping skills. I walk outdoors every day, and many days it was with a friend. But going out into the world is a whole other story. I know I'm not the only one who feels it. I read an article recently that said some people would be hyper social after the pandemic is over, going to every social function they can. Others will have "cave syndrome", like an animal coming from hibernation in spring, scanning the horizon for danger. We'll just have to ease back in slowly.

And that brings me to the subject of my career. There is likely to be big changes. At the moment I am not teaching. Not in person and not on-line. We'll see what I feel like after things are more normal for a while. I've done a couple of presentations on Zoom and will continue to do them if asked. I also don't want to be dyeing kits in the future. I have a good number of Poppy and Peony kits left, perhaps about a dozen of each, and once they are gone I will not be dyeing more. That boat has sailed. It's time to move on to something else. What that is I'm not sure yet. I bet I'm not the only one feeling that too in these strange times.

Hoping this post finds you well and enjoying the beautiful summer weather, now that the heat wave has calmed down.