This post marks the conclusion of An Interview with Artists! I went off the rails with my final question and I am glad I did. I have also decided this question is a good litmus test to use when I meet new people. Haha.
What is your reaction to the following scenario? (Note, you can substitute “fabric” for any art supply of your choice to make it relatable)
A coworker asks you to purchase cotton fabric. The only requirement is that it must be within budget and in specific lengths. (2 yards, 1 yard, ½ yard). The color and whether the fabrics are solid or print does not matter. You carefully select fabric in prints and colors that are visually appealing.
You return with your purchases and provide them to your coworker.
One week later your coworker has finished testing the fabric (all she did was weigh the fabric).
She asks you if she should throw the fabric away.
How do you respond?
“Definitely not throw it away… but return the cloth and the money to me.
I have always wanted to try “fabric collages”….so now I have the materials and a new challenge… fun!”
Art Medium: Photography
“Glee. What could be better than free fabric?”
Art Medium: Pastel, paper, fabric, felt, rickrack
“Fingers clutched into a claw, I scratch at the table top in aggravation.”
Art Medium: Photography, electronics
“The coworker is a confused person and may need therapy.”
Art Medium: Transparent watercolor
“This scenario confuses me a bit. If I go buy art supplies for someone, I would know what they plan to do with them in order to select what they need. If they then decided that the materials wouldn’t work and wanted to throw them away, so be it. If I can see a use for those art materials, I would take them. If not, then I would see if I could find someone else that could put them to good use. I have bought art materials that I subsequently decided were not right for what I was planning and that’s what I did.”
Medium: Watercolors on paper
“I smile politely and take the materials. I selected the objects so I know they will end up in a future artwork!”
Art Medium: Mixed media / Assemblage
“Hell no! I would not throw any material/paper that could be used for a future art project. If I can’t use it then I would ask other artists – or donate to my local high school.”
Art Medium: Collage/mixed media
Diane Marcial Fuchs
“I would be horrified at the apparent waste of perfectly good fabric and would immediately say, “No, don’t throw it away! Think of all you could do with the fabric!” Then if she wasn’t interested in any of my ideas, I would ask if I could have it! Even if I wouldn’t do anything with it right away, I would keep it in my stash of materials because I might very well do something with it in the future!”
Art Medium: Watercolor, oils, acrylics, pastels, colored pencil, graphite
José Ángel Hernández
“Assuming I can’t ask any questions and in trying to comply with the two requirements I would purchase a 9 ft. x 12 ft. 8 oz. Natural Canvas Drop Cloth from Home Depot at a cost of $22.29 plus sales tax. I would cut to specifications and provide it to the coworker. Instead of scrapping the cloths I would ask to keep three square cloths (72”x72”, 36”x36”, and 18”x18”) and the extra piece to make canvases and paint cows of different size canvases but all squares. You may ask why cow? Because cows moove me.”
Editor’s Note: I love how much thought and planning José put in to this answer. Someone give this man some fabric!
Art Medium: 3D Mixed Media
“Fabric’s expensive. Can I have it? 😃”
Art Medium: Acrylic paintings, charcoals, mixed media, & printmaking
Christine “Tiny” Irizarry
“No, don’t throw it away. Let me see if I can get approval to keep it for an art project. I have this great sculpture idea in mind!”
Art Medium: Watercolors / acrylics / mixed media
“I told a friend of mine that loves photography to pick up 3 different types of photographic paper and tell me what and why she chose them. Later over a glass of wine, we discussed each one. She was enamored by the feel of each one … the luster, the texture, the matte. I asked if she had printed on them. I gasped as she said no, I just stick to matte paper.
Photographic art paper is so crucial in the printing of your artwork. With each project I seek out that one art paper or printing process that enhances my artwork. Examples include:
Back Street Project – Metallic Gloss Paper
Love Letters Project – Photo Polymer Gravure
Scents of Faith Project- William Turner Art Paper that has a lot of teeth
Into the Light B&W Project – Platinum Baryta fiber paper that enhances the blacks and holds the whites
Women with Scars Project – don’t know what art paper I will use as I just started photographing”
Editor’s Note: Just as Deb has pointed out the nuances of photographic paper and how the selection affects the outcome of her art, so too with fabric! An artist is aware and appreciates the value and nuances of materials.
Art Medium: Photography
“Absolutely not! I will keep it or give it to someone.”
Art Medium: Photography, digital composite, beginning watercolor
Anna Mikhaela Reyes
“I would tell my coworker that throwing the fabric away would be wasteful and that I will take it home to create something out of it!”
Art Medium: Charcoal, pastel, colored pencil
“Since fabric is my current medium and expensive, I would just keep it and find a way to give the item new purpose. Either I would use it or donate it to someone that will. The quilt guild I am part of, does so many donation quilts, they can always use the fabric.”
Art Medium: Quilting, scrapbooking
“Are you kidding?!? No, no, no, we can make something with this.”
Art Medium: Watercolor on paper, acrylic on canvas and walls
Diane Beem Wright
“Ha Ha Ha! Did you know I’m purging my house? I have sooooo much stuff in a small house! Normally, I would say “No, don’t throw it away! I’ll take it! Thinking someday I will find a use for it. (Chances are, I was creating something with the fabric in my mind while picking it out!). I’m someone who does not like to throw things out, which is why my home is cluttered! I’m getting older, and also being ADD, I am realizing “less is more”. So today, I would take the fabric and donate it for someone else to use. I have experimented for years with different media and subjects in my art, looking for “my thing”. I have been narrowing it down to what I enjoy creating and/or what I can create for someone else, rather than what I think someone would buy or what might win a prize in an art show. So, I am trying to declutter my studio – which still contains a storage box with fabric scraps!
Then again, I have been thinking I’d like to design and sew my own clothes, so maybe I would keep the fabric! (Oh, no, here I go again!)”
Art Medium: Watercolor, color pencil, acrylics, assemblage/mixed media
“I would likely fail in hiding my bewilderment and puzzle over how this person is the right candidate for working in the company. Then I would offer to take the fabric and would delight in my ‘fortune.’
Art Medium: Assemblage art, photography, machine embroidery
And that concludes the series! I hope you found it entertaining and inspiring.
Be sure to visit the artists’ social media links to learn more about their upcoming exhibits and other activities.
If you are local make plans to attend a Visual Art League meeting as a guest. Visit the websites below for more information. There are dozens of art clubs and leagues in the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex – find one that works for you.
Visual Art League of Lewisville
An Interview with Artists: Part 1
An Interview with Artists: Part 2
It all started with “I have an idea” Intro