Congratulations to Barb Forrister on being this week’s Facebook blogger of the week!
When Pippa and I were going through all of the blogs that were entered this past week we were amazed by how awesome they all were – it was a tough to choose just one. In the end we chose Barb Forrister’s post on her Moon Shadow piece. The wolf was amazingly beautiful, and we loved the texture in the piece. Barb does a great job in describing the techniques used for this piece in her blog post. Read on to find out more about Barb and what inspires her.
How did you get interested in fiber art?
I have always had a deep appreciation for art but when I was introduced to quilting, I was amazed at the rich texture added by lines of stitching. I knew right then that this was something I wanted to pursue. I enrolled in quilting classes to learn how to piece, appliqué and quilt. Then, I began drawing more and making my own original designs for wall quilts. I became consumed by the visual as well as the tactile qualities that I felt needed to be present in my work. I soon realized that I needed to expand my repertoire to include all sorts of materials that conveyed various textures. I was no longer confined to cotton alone but was encouraged to try and make my own surfaces so to speak. This was a very pivotal point for me in my career.
What inspired the amazing wolves that are featured in your blog post?
I love nature and I am a huge fan of all sorts of wildlife. Moon Shadow was inspired by a poem, oddly enough. I have a fiber art show coming up in February at a gallery along with other fiber artists. We were given an interpretation assignment and split into three groups. One group was given a poem; the second group was given a piece of music and the third group was given a piece of artwork. We were asked to make a piece of art mounted on a 14X16 canvas that reflected our interpretation. I was given the poem to interpret. The poem spoke of a desert scene which reminded me of wolves. Today, wolves are being threatened. The US Interior Department has recently proposed to eliminate federal protection for wolves in Colorado, Utah, Idaho, Montana, Washington and Oregon. As a result, more than a thousand wolves could be killed. Being an animal advocate, I felt this was a piece that had to be made to make people aware of their plight. The first photo on my blog is a full view of the entire piece and the second photo is a detailed view. Moon Shadow was such a joy to make that I am now in the process of making a companion to this piece.
What is your favorite part of creating?
Wow, that’s a tough one! I enjoy painting, dyeing and creating unique pieces of layered cloth. It’s hard to pick a favorite but I suppose I would have to say my favorite creative process is heat distressing materials such as cellophane, Tyvek®, Textiva® and Lutradur®. I am such a pyromaniac!!! I love watching the synthetic fibers bubble and contort as they take on new shapes and textures.
Do you have any tips for people interested in trying their hand at fiber art?My advice to anyone interested in trying to do fiber art is to just play and experiment. Use any and all types of materials that interest you. Anything is fair game. There are no rules, just adventures! It’s usually these ideas which give birth to some wonderful pieces of art. Within a few years of just playing and practicing, your skills will improve. I think it’s a wonderful way to get in touch with your inner child!
What is your main goal as an artist (if you have one)?My main goal as an artist is to work more in a 3 Dimensional manner. I love bringing things off the surface. Many of my pieces are indeed wall hangings with components that reach out and strive to become more dimensional. I especially love doing this with plants and animals. Leaves can be made to offer a canopy for an animal. Nests can be knitted. Animals can be built up in layers to provide dimension. I have just completed a 3 story, 3dimensional adobe village with vigas and ladders as part of a collaboration with 13 other international artists that I am so looking forward to sharing soon. I have also made a couple of 3 dimensional trees and am planning on making a tree house. There are so many ideas and I am just beginning to scratch the surface. Quilting is not just for the beds or the walls. It can actually stand alone and become more sculptural. How cool is that?!!!
Thank you so much Barb!
If you want to enter to become the next Facebook blogger of the week visit our Facebook page on Sunday in order to post a link to your latest blog post!