Late Monday night/early Tuesday Morning, I boarded a plane headed to Charlotte, North Carolina and the McColl Center of Art + Innovation where I will be an artist in residence for the next two months. Here’s the proof. This is the door to my studio.
And this is what it says on the wall.
In between meetings, orientation, artist studio visits, social gatherings of the informal and formal sort, I’ve been cobbling together my studio. When I arrived the space was really a blank canvas.
The art supplies and quilts I had shipped were just waiting in the corner to be unpacked and organized.
So I got to it. It took me a while to figure out the best configuration to maximize the outlets in the space. The white walls do not have outlets. The brick wall does.
At first I had my cutting station next to the sink.
I really didn’t like it, but felt that I needed to use all of the other tables for fabric organization.
Notice the large box of fabric waiting to be ironed. When people come to visit, I can iron.
Last night, I figured out an improved cutting station. I needed to turn the large table and make room for my cutting mat on the end.
It is perfect now as I can cut from three out of the four sides of the table This is great for cutting large things.
I have two sewing machines set up.
One belongs to the McColl Center and is an industrial straight stitch machine. I am hoping to teach others to sew while I am here, so having two sewing spaces is really nice. The other machine is mine. A beautiful Bernina 930. These really do have to be the best machines ever made.
On the other half of my L-shaped sewing table, I have space for journal writing, design work, cutting out fabric, or welcoming guests to sit and talk while I sew.
I have a large shelving unit for fabric and supply storage.
Local quilt artist and former McColl resident Nancy Cook donated several boxes of beautiful fabric to the Center. I will be using some of the fabric to make a community quilt. Other artists will be using the textiles for different non-quilt related projects. Thank you Nancy for your generous gift!
The second shelf is my office shelve. If I find whole punch my life will be complete.
For the most part, I am going to be working with solids while I am here. Trying to select the right prints to bring from home was too big of a project to get my head around. A more limited palette frees me up to think about other things. This photo is with the large table filled with fabric and against the wall.
I’m using the flat storage unit to house sewing supplies.
I built a very crude divider system out of a cardboard box. It works though.
Who has a studio with cathedral windows? I do.
Soon, all these bare walls will be filled with finished quilts and design walls. I can’t wait to fill those walls with color!
See, I’m already busy at work.
I’m ready. This is going to be an incredible experience.
What an opportunity! Love the room, especially the windows. Looking forward to seeing what you put up on the walls. Hope they gave you a nice bedroom to rest in.
Did you take the final photo yourself or did you bring your own photographer?
Sue- The giant flag (Colors Unfurled) quilt is on display here. I tell people every day that it wouldn’t be hanging here if the curator hadn’t also been an incredibly nice psychologist too! You are big reason why I finished that truly important piece (for me anyway). Thank you for guiding me in finish piece.
That looks amazing! I’m feeling so envious of the amount of space! Also – cute pigtails!
Nothing like pigtails to make you feel younger. The space really is amazing. Thank you Leslie for stopping by.
Just awesome, Maria! Looks very cool. Coolest of all, is the artist! Looking forward to your posts. much love!
So far so good. It’s really amazing–all of it actually. love back to you dearest Lila.
What great light and space
I know! And the ceilings are so high and the design walls sooooo BIG. It’s going to be great fun trying to fill them. Thank you Mary for stopping by.
Thanks for sharing. It is most interesting to hear your thought process while setting up your new work space. Wishing you a highly productive time.
Thank you Lesley!
Hi Maria… you are blessed. Not only as a superior planner and devoted textile artist, but because you have developed the commitment to take your career to the limits of your ability, will and courage…being away from home and family for two months will give you focus and sure, the studio is another blessing. Cannot wait to follow along and see where the residency and your new work end up…
Bethany in Kingston, ON
Thank you Bethany. Your words always make me feel good about myself. I hope you, too, are having finding the time to get creative.
Wishing you a wonderful adventure in a spectacularly modern city. I am sure the bank buildings will also stimulate your creativity. They shine with mirrors, reflected sunlight and ingenious architecture and skyline views. Make sure you attend the artist crawl once a month in the adjacent village and the Craft Museum that will blow you away. I hope to meet my niece for the first time although I feel like I already have through your delicious blogging. You will do well, especially from Alaska since to my knowledge no one from there fought for the Yankees in the Civil War, known otherwise in the south as the Northern War of Aggression! Hope we can get together while you are here. Work hard and sleep even harder.
That’s good advice Aunt Carole. I am really blow away by Charlotte. It is absolutely charming. And the support for the arts here is really mind boggling. Yes. to a visit! We will figure it out.
Good to know you are settled in. Looks like a great space. Looking forward to seeing your new projects.
I’m looking forward to the new projects too!
Wow! What a great space..I know you will do wonderful things during this opportunity.Your organizational skills are really showing.Have fun and enjoy thisopportunity of a lifetime.
Sue- You are absolutely right. This is an opportunity of a life time, and I trying my hardest to make every minute count.
What a beautiful space! I can’t wait to see what you create here!
Thank you Heather! I can’t wait either!
Your aura is shining bright! Red brick and cathedral windows must help. Can’t wait to watch your progress!
Thank you Jan. I’ve got some finish work to do on some pieces for the Fitton, but once that’s done, I ready to go with some new ideas. I’m really looking forward to it.
What a beautiful space! I’ll be interested in how this goes, going from working alone to working with people around all the time–even if they are artists.
Sherri- It is VERY interesting being in a building filled with artists and staff that runs the McColl. There is potential for good a conversation around every corner. I’m trying to find my happy medium right now. It will take a bit of adjusting, but I think I will get there.