COMPOSITION: SPARE FIGURE/GROUND

• Length: 5 days
• Level: Very advanced
• Prerequisites: Must be excellent machine piecer, must be practiced at cutting freehand, must have taken Improvisations: Let's Experiment!, must be ready for intense study
• Sewing machine used


DESCRIPTION
Composition will be explored using the principles of figure/ground. Figure/ground is loosely described as positive/negative or the relationship of figure or motif or subject matter or configuration(s) on a background or ground.

Students will produce small studies built around color and value and dynamic spacing as they progress through timed design exercises emphasizing figure/ground relationships. All compositions will be done using solid colors (commercial or hand-dyed), direct freehand cutting, and machine-piecing. It will be vitally important that each student come prepared with an excellent choice of colors and values (light to dark of those colors) as some exercises will bed dependent on value usage.

It will be assumed that anyone taking this class will be ready to abide by “time constraints” imposed on individual design exercises and that each will do their best to keep up with the work. Since the parts of each composition will be pinned to work walls, it is essential that students bring multiple boxes of excellent pins (namely CLOVER BRAND BALL-HEAD PINS - silk pins and regular ball-head pins).

Important: Students need to bring (2 if possible) the LARGEST OLFA CUTTING MAT (24” x 36”).
Please bring LOTS of POSTCARDS / PHOTOS / MAGAZINE PAGES of MOTIFS / PATTERNING / PAINTINGS / SUBJECT MATTER that EXPRESS WHAT YOU LOVE and CARE ABOUT IN YOUR WORK.
*** Some compositions may reference to these!


Presentations:
Optional but important: If possible, each student should bring 10-20 slides or 3-6 actual quilts or your own laptop with a digital presentation and be prepared to make a short (3-5 minutes maximum) articulate presentation about their work and be ready to discuss and explain their goals. The Crow Timber Frame Barn provides use of a slide projector and a digital projector, but cannot provide a laptop or desktop computer. Participants may be able to share another participant's computer for digital presentations.





SUPPLIES
Water Spray Bottle
Sewing Machine
Swing-Arm Lamp
Digital Camera and Printer
Multiple Outlet Power Strip/Adaptors
Glue to Adhere Snapshots into Sketchbook
Iron/Iron Cleaner
Heavy Duty Extension Cords
4’ x 8' Batting/Flannel (white) on which to pin work
Ball-Head Pins (very fine and regular size)
24” x 36” Cutting Mat/Extra Large Rotary Cutter and Blades
Scissors/Needles/Thread/Rulers
Sketchbook and Pens
Other Supplies you want
Packing Tape if shipping boxes


Optional Books:
> CROSSROADS
, 2007, Breckling Press (new catalog from one of Nancy’s exhibitions) - available at Crow Barn
> NANCY CROW, 2006, Breckling Press (new book covering Nancy's work from 1989-2005) - available at Crow Barn


Unfortunately, the following titles are out of print, but your local library may have them or order on Amazon.com.
GRADATIONS: FROM THE STUDIO OF NANCY CROW, Quilt House Publishing
NANCY CROW: WORK IN TRANSITION, American Quilters’ Society
NANCY CROW: QUILTS AND INFLUENCES, American Quilters’ Society
NANCY CROW: IMPROVISATIONAL QUILTS, C&T Publishing


Fabrics:
5 yards each of:
• SOLID BLACK and SOLID WHITE (Pimatex by Robert Kaufman is wonderful quality)

At least 1 yard of each color:
• SOLID COLORS (commercial or hand-dyed) the widest range you can afford to bring and be sure to include both warm and cool colors - 80 to 100 different colors (1 yard or more of each color)
• OFF-WHITES tans, warm white, cool white, creams (1 yard or more of each color)
• GRAYS 5 to 9 in light, medium, and dark (1 yard or more of each color)

• We will use everything listed above so do not decide to leave anything out
• We will use a lot of solid colors so bring a good range that includes darks, medium and light values of Browns, Blues, Greens, Reds, Golds, Yellows, Oranges, Purples, Violets

• DO NOT BRING ANY PRINTS.
• Please wash and shrink all fabrics!



NOTES REGARDING FABRIC SUPPLY LIST
Yes, the rumor is true!!! Yes, I do ask that each student bring lots of fabrics. My personal theory embraces the belief that one will be freer to be creative if one has many fabric choices available in class. After 30+ years of teaching, I consider each class I teach to be on a graduate level and therefore I expect students to arrive prepared with all necessary supplies. In that regard, I have outlined those fabrics we will use in this class. For some students, my fabric supply list will seem overwhelming in quantity and variety, while for other students, the selection they bring will never be large enough or good enough.

About solid colors--the more shades you have to work with, the more you will learn about how to work with color. Color is Joyous!!! Color does not cause pain!!! Take DELIGHT in color!!!

Working in color does not mean only using BOLD colors or HOT colors; working in color means learning to be versatile in all types of colors.

I caution you not to bring mostly middle value solids, rather you must bring a wide variety, including:
• Light values
• Medium light values
• Medium values
• Medium dark values
• Dark values

• Please bring the glowing version… AND… the dull/flat version of as many colors as possible.

• Remember that ANY COLOR… AND… ANY VALUE of ANY COLOR can be glowing or dull/flat.

Many students arrive with their own hand-dyed solids or stacks they have purchased from other
dyers. By all means, bring hand-dyed if you want.

But solids (dyed commercially) are equally acceptable.

I usually work with my own subtly dyed solid colors. My own palette includes approximately 500+ shades.

Regarding fabrics: I recommend 1 yard cuts or larger because I feel happier with a minimum of 1 yard cuts (actually 2 yard cuts), but please feel free to come with 1/2 yard cuts if this will facilitate your having a much broader range of values. But please do not blame me if you run out of any color as I have no way of knowing which colors you will use up.


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