As a perfect follow-up to our discussion (May 14, below) about the benefits of working in small sizes, take a few moments to consider the Year Study works of Susan Feller, of Augusta, WV.
The photo above shows a few pieces from Susan’s yearlong undertaking, called Color Studies. Susan is a well-known rughooker, designer, teacher, and owner of Ruckman Mill Farm. But she wanted to keep challenging herself. So she set out a self-study program of designing and creating one small 5″ x 5″ piece, every day for an entire year.
It was quite an undertaking, but you can see, looking through her collection of very small pieces, how much she was able to experiment with materials and color, as well as design. What a creative journey this must have been for her! Here is the collection of December 2013 Year Study squares:
Susan writes about these December designs, “The techniques explored during December include rughooking, trapunto, embroidery, painting, sculpting, beading (a rughooking term alternating loops with two strips of wool), appliqué. Materials include wool fabric, alpaca and novelty yarns, cotton threads, hand torn fabric, silk and cotton yardage.”
Did she learn more by doing several hundred small projects than she might have in spending the year doing several larger rugs? I would bet that the answer is yes. The number of design challenges and experiments undertaken, because they were each so small in size, must have been a wonderful and unique design exercise. And I mean “exercise” literally – she was really strengthening her design muscles!
I know Susan will be writing about her Year Study experience, but for now, learn and see more about her small-size design study at http://artwools.com/year-study/ or go here to see her month by month gallery of small images.
And her main website is at ruckmanmillfarm.com. Thank you, Susan for your kind permission to show your work here! It is so inspiring! Copyright is held by Susan L. Feller, all rights for reproduction reserved by artist(s). Contact artist for use in any form of media.