Looking back

I usually find that this is a good time of year for looking back as well as looking forward, like Janus. Yesterday we cleared out the loft, primarily in preparation for the move but also just to see what was up there. I found a box containing some old work which I thought might be interesting to post here.

I hardly recognise this as my own work:

Urban Renewal, 2006

Machine pieced and machine appliqued, this measures about 40″ square and is hand quilted. You can probably see that this is made entirely from commercial fabrics and prints, which I no longer use.

And this, from later the same year:

Seeking Something, 2006

About 31″ x 44″, almost entirely machine-quilted and also made with commercial prints. The standing stone shapes are hand appliqued, but I can’t imagine doing that much quilting by machine now.

And finally, this, from 2007:

Another World, 2007

This one is about 36″ x 52″ and is entirely hand-pieced/hand-quilted. I think this is the first large quilt in which I used some of my own hand-dyed fabrics, and it was also my first exhibited quilt, appearing at the 2007 Quilts in the Garden show in Trentham.

Interesting to see the differences from and similarities to more recent work. All recognisably by the same hand? I’m not so sure – but then it’s notably difficult to view your own work with an entirely objective eye. I’ll add them to the shop: better in someone else’s loft than mine!

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13 Responses to Looking back

  1. Chris Gray says:

    Looking back is not a bad thing is it?…it can inform and provoke so many thoughts.

    …and, sometimes, it can show us what path we’ve been on even though we may not have realised it at the time ..

    Have a great and creative 2012

    x Chris

  2. Maggi says:

    I would certainly have difficulty in recognising the first quilt as your but definitely see something of your more recent work in the others. It is good to look back to see how we evolve over time.

  3. Katie says:

    I like seeing the evolution of an artist, especially when I am fairly new to their work. Thank you for sharing your old pieces. 🙂

  4. helen salo says:

    Karen, All still excellent work. Just a resresentation of a “different Karen” a few I could see at my house. Ha!

  5. Loralei says:

    How very interesting, to see the evolution of one’s art… it is, in fact, why I started blogging (though at times I still forget to record results). I love all of these pieces, though I can definitely see more of your current artistic style in the last two pieces.. Thank you for sharing, and Happy New Year to you!

  6. serenapotter says:

    really. i would definitely see these as yours. maybe not so much the first one, but yes i see you’ve grown and that must feel good?

    i think they are all beautiful.

    • Karen Turner says:

      I don’t really see the growth thing – and I hardly ever feel good about my own work. I find most of it slightly embarrassing, if I’m totally honest, and still struggling to find that thing that I can love because it is my own. I’m much less miserable than this in real life, by the way 🙂 Always interesting to look back though. And thank you.

      • serenapotter says:

        no. i feel ya on this one.

        i write long be sure to cut this up if you don’t like it emails anytime i ship something away.
        i can never figure out if we are all innately like this and others just don’t publicize that side of it or if i just have horrific confidence issues.
        i too am not nearly as navel gazing, whiny and unfun as i think my own blog often sounds. i really like what you make, even the early pieces, and i wouldn’t say that if i didn’t really think it.

        • Karen Turner says:

          I think most artists wrestle with the ‘inner critic’ but you’re right, many of them don’t admit to it. It’s always been my aim here to be honest, which includes posting work I’m not necessarily proud of and work that isn’t ‘finished’. Every single day I have the ‘have I any right to be doing this, to call myself an artist’ conversation with myself. I think the solution is simply to continue.

  7. karen says:

    I still have things I made at City and Guilds in 1999!!! I really must have a clear out….

  8. Rachel says:

    It’s fascinating to see how much your work has changed!

  9. Janice says:

    Well, I recognise the themes as yours, and definitely the last two have much in common with your more recent work. They are all beautiful, and beautifully executed. Lovely to see them!

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