Friday, January 22, 2010

Inspiration vs Copying

It has been so much fun having ya'all comment on the last post. It makes me feel loved, even though I know what you are really after is the wonderful Amish Abstractions book.

As part of the contest, I specified that you'd get an extra chance to win if you made a quilt top inspired by one of the quilts in the book. Inspired can be taken really loosely. For instance, you don't have to use solids unless you want to. You can be inspired by the color palette, the way the colors are used in the blocks, the way the blocks are arranged... There are lots of different ways to be inspired. And as far as the letters go? Initials count. Or the year (okay, those are numbers but haven't you realized yet I'm not that big of a stickler about rules?).

Additionally, I didn't say you had to make a great quilt. It doesn't have to be fabulous and it doesn't have to be large - a doll quilt is a-okay. And it just has to be a *top* by June, not completed.

I'm thinking we could have a class/get-together so we can actually do quilts together following the theme of Amish/liberated/letters. Not starting just yet, cuz life is still a bit crazed, but soon. Our recommended texts will be Gwen Marston's Liberated Quiltmaking (I and/or II) and Amish Abstractions. Recommended, not mandatory.

And I'm thinking we use solids or near solids, since so many of you commented that you had them and this would be a good project to use them on. Personally, I think just plain solids are boring, but mixing in a few hand-dyes really adds some depth. You could also use single-colored batiks... Or the Gee's Bend line (which no, I still haven't used yet).

I had a new quilter asking me about copyright issues and at what point inspiration becomes copying. In particular, the photos from Pheromone shown in this blog post.

Taking the actual photo and printing it out on fabric would be a big no-no. That's a clear copyright violation. The artist might be willing to let you do that, especially if it's explained that this is a quilt for personal use, not for sale. The proper thing to do is write and ask for permission.

Now taking the photos as inspiration and doing something completely different is highly encouraged. Just the idea of making bugs appeals to me. I tried some drawings and realized pretty quickly that I'd either have to piece huge monster bugs OR embroider on things like antennae and legs OR simplify. I like making small blocks and this is how I'd approach free-piecing the ones on the book cover (seen above in the catalog that Pokey is reading).

Oops, I didn't color in the bug on my second drawing, so it looks a bit goofy. See my tutorial here about starting a free-pieced design.

On a completely different topic, Lily managed to charm everyone at the vet's office when she was there for her wellness visit and rabies shot. She is not going to be happy when I take her back in for a teeth cleaning. Pokey had to go in too (the next day) and is hanging in there, doing as well as she can (Pokey has Chronic Renal Failure) - she's been a bouncy, playful cuddle bunny. The latter bit is making it hard to hand-quilt.

I love Fridays because I get to watch the tv shows I recorded the previous night. Of course now I've watched The Office (an okay clip show) and 30 Rock (nothing really inspired unfortunately), and Fringe (loved the first 10 minutes but it got a bit predictable) and Project Runway (I love how using non-fabric to make dresses really brings out the creativity - burlap ranks up there with candy and newspapers in previous years) so now what can I watch? Nope, not that Burn Notice, must wait for my husband for that. sigh.

As good as they were, none of the shows compared to the most recent episode of Better Off Ted called "Lust in Translation" - so so so funny. Love that show.

Off to hand-quilt and watch more tv. It's a rough life. Take care.

22 comments:

beth said...

I began a solid quilt this week, so I would love to join others in the process and at least ooh and aah over other quilts. :)

Jennifer D said...

Great ideas Tonya.

You and I have very different tastes in TV shows but since you are running out of entertainment, have you seen "Modern Family" yet? I love it. My favorite new show.

Bonnie said...

Tonya of course you are loved! The book is just a bonus.

Have you tried The Mentalist? I love that show - the main character, which I can't for the life of me remember his name right now, is so off the wall.

Glad kitties are doing well. I just love Pokey's blue eyes. I'm sure they are even better in person.

True Blue Nana said...

I love working in solids and I think a solid class or whatever would be fun. I like all the challenges but I hesitate to join because I have a fear of being over committed. There are so many possibilities with solids.

Cheryl said...

Amish Abstractions, Liberated Quiltmaking (I just got my copy) and your free pieced letters? Sounds like a fun challenge. Count me in!

Beena said...

I have to tape two different channels at once on Thursday nights. The networks don't seem to realize that Thursday is not the only day of the week. Then, come Saturday night, there never seems to be anything on...
I'm glad when LOST comes back it will be on Tuesdays!

jude said...

love the bug idea....

Rene' said...

Great idea to have a class/get together. I like the reading list you suggest. Just bought some Gees Bend fabric. Good discussion on copying versus inspiration...sometimes hard to know where to draw the line. I agree that The Mentalist is a good show. Even though I DVR a few favorites, I never seem to have time to watch. I heard Modern Family is good too.

Darlene said...

Cats make knitting just about impossible, too. My Molly makes a beeline for my lap as soon as I pull out the sock I've been working on. She gets quite snarly if I try to knit with her on my lap, which Does Not Go Over Well with me. When she gets booted off my lap for misbehaving, she sits around with a hurt look on her face. Guess she figures if growling doesn't work, maybe a guilt trip will do the trick!

Deborah said...

I was helping a student tie her first quilt. She had just gotten 2 new kittens. I was warned that they were shy and not to expect to see them. We got out the yarn, threaded the needles and BOOM both kitties were on the kitchen table chasing the yarn. So much for shy. Pokey looks good. :)

Sharon said...

I like your idea of a class or get-together with the Amish/liberated/letters thing! That would be fun. I've always loved the Amish palette and Amish quilts. Making them Gwen-style would be fun, and OF COURSE adding the letters! I'm already thinking of what to say.

Good discussion on inspiration vs copying. I'm glad you pointed out that even something like the color scheme could be the inspiration.

I got Gwen's new Liberated Quilting today!! I'm lovin' it! Now I want to run into the quilt studio and just play. Thank you so much for your contribution to getting this book into print. And congrats on having a quilt in the book too...you must be thrilled and proud!

jmbmommy said...

Oh goody--you're back...I haven't been reading blogs for a while because of that crazy thing called life, but if you are back there might be some good stuff to read and get excited about. Like that book, I need to check that out, I am going to go and do that right about now.

Congrats on the manuscript! I knew you could do it!

Clare said...

I'm up for a solids class. Just let me know when so I can clear the decks (yes I know it won't be for a long time yet!).

ChrisQuilts said...

LOVE THE BUGS! I have to make one!! Why don't you have your readers make their own version of a bug and send it to you - you could assemble them all into a "Bug Quilt"!!! My 5 and 6 year old grandsons would love it if I'd make them a bug quilt - I'm so inspired!

Cher said...

just finished 6 solid letters as part of a secret challenge due the end of the month....so..I like surrounding solids with tone on tones...or marbles or..prints too. Gwen's class will be all solids and that will be interesting to see how I do.
love the kitty photo...you do such a great job capturing them in wonderful poses..

Magpie Sue said...

Re: Project Runway, I was amazed at the quality of the work that was done with burlap. I think this season's crop of designers have a lot going for them. It should be a much better season than the last.

Too bad you have to wait for Burn Notice. I missed the newest episode but caught some of the marathon of the previous season. I love Fiona's throw-away lines. ("If you do it right, Sam, there shouldn't be anything left to repair after you've blown it up." Or words to that effect.) I should make a Fiona quilt ;- )

Kim said...

Hey Tonya,

Can you hear us talking about YOU over at Libquilters?
We're having a sew in !

Hope you are having a productive day.

Happy sewing

Notjustnat said...

Oopsy, I missed out on the giveaway! but on the positives note, I received my Liberated Quiltmaking II yesterday. Today is Australia day and I have time to sit and read it. I think I'm a liberated quilter (when I quilt hahaha!). Hugs Nat

Cheryl Arkison said...

Great comments on inspiration vs copying. It is a finer line for some. I've wanted to have a quilt exhibit where I have a photograph of the inspiration next to the finished product. I always thought that would be interesting.

And I agree about solids. I've never been drawn to them because they lack texture to me.

qltmom9 said...

Tonya,
I sent you a couple emails via
dufendachs@juno(dot)com Google is giving me fits. I am SOOOO EXCITED about winning! If you didn't get the email, please, let me keep trying to get an email to you. THANK YOU.~ You made me the happiest woman...and my kids think I am a nut for the Snoopy dance I did!
Lucy (in IN)

KateKwiltz said...

I am in love with "Better Off Ted," which means it probably won't survive another season. Glad someone else appreciates it, too!

Well wishes to your kitties -- spending time at the vet is no fun for them...or us!

Library Gal Quilts said...

Hi there! Joined the sew together and was reading your past posts where I see you love Better Off Ted...oh yeah, it is just so funny. I have all of them tivoed. My husband and I just love the episode, Racial Sensitivity" it is so funny we've watched it three times. Walk away. Walk away tall...oh yeah! Glad to see your kitties too. Oh boy this is fun! xo Pam in Chico