"Blue Totem" in process 2014 Cindy Grisdela

“Blue Totem” in process 2014 Cindy Grisdela

The Baltimore Craft Show is next week and I’m in the studio working on some new pieces. I’m always a little hesitant to post “in process” images, because they look so unfinished–but that’s the point of putting up process shots, right?

This piece is part of my Totem series, which explores the use of a single large improvisational block as a central motif, surrounded with asymmetrical borders enhanced with free motion stitching. A variety of stitched motifs gives an interesting texture to the large solid shapes. You can see the others in the series here and here. I decided to do another one in the series for Baltimore because one of the others, Green Totem, sold last year and the other, Red Totem, is unavailable for exhibit in Baltimore because it has been chosen for a special display at the Atlanta Craft Show next month. I wrote about that here if you’d like to know more!

There’s something almost meditative about creating these pieces. Of course I know the approximate size and shape it will be, but the improvisational nature of the central block design means that I’m just letting the design evolve in an organic way, as each choice of color and shape determine those following. Then the spacing of the green lines to break up the large blue shapes surrounding the center is another decision. For example, after seeing this photo, I realize that the upper and lower vertical lines need to be changed and perhaps more lines need to be added to make the composition work. Using a camera is a great design tool!

Today is a great day for working in the studio because we woke up to about a foot of new snow outside and I won’t be

February 2014 Snow

February 2014 Snow

getting my car out anytime soon. We haven’t had this much snow at once here in Virginia in a couple of years.

The Baltimore show is next week, opening Friday, Feb. 21 and running through Sunday, Feb. 23. It’s located at One West Pratt St. in Baltimore, MD and the hours are 10 – 8 Friday, 10-6 Saturday, and 11-5 Sunday. I’m in Booth 4219 and I’d love to see you there.

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