I was asked by my online friend and fellow Canadian fibre artist, Monika Kinner-Whalen, to participate in an International Artist’s Blog Hop. Many of you are probably familiar with Monika’s stunningly beautiful (and award-winning!) thread-painting art. But if you aren’t then be sure to check out her work on her website called My Sweet Prairie. She did her blog post last week for the blog hop and you can read it here.
Welcome to those who are not regular followers of my blog! My name is Karen Miller and I am a hooked fibre artist living and working in Ottawa, Ontario Canada. I have been making hooked fibre art pieces since 2008 and since that time I have seen my work undergo a lot of changes. What started from a focus on whimsy and landscapes has developed into a love for abstractions of nature and a focus on forms. Currently I am finding a lot of inspiration in the skeletal forms of trees. I am enjoying exploring this concept and am looking forward to taking it to a new level with a new focus in 2015.
I currently have work on display in the juried “Prairies” fibre art show in Alberta, Canada and in a small group show called “Colours Caught in Fibre: Rug Hooking Made Modern” in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. I am looking forward to a second small group show next March in Toronto, Ontario and then I have my first solo exhibits coming up also in 2015. My work has won several awards including a Viewer’s Choice Award in 2012 at the Hooked in the Mountains show in Vermont and my art was included in the book “Textileart Around the World” which was just published last month.
In addition to my subject matter, another thing that I think sets my work apart from other hooked fibre artists is my love of texture. I am always trying to work in a bit of texture where I can in my pieces, from leather and beads to fluffy grasses. I want people to want to reach out and touch my work. If I see someone looking at one of my pieces and see them unable to resist reaching out and touching or stroking it then I know I have done a good job. Texture makes a piece come alive and it connects the audience to the message that I was trying to convey.
My creative process more often than not begins from a photo. I only make pieces from photos that I have taken. So for me the artistic process begins when I look through my viewfinder and compose the photo that I want to take. That photo then becomes the basis for the piece that I will create, whether it be a photo of my kids, a landscape scene, or something unusual in nature that inspires me.
I love doing something unusual and unexpected like the pieces found in my current series of trees. I focus solely on the structure and main outline of the tree and keep my palette as minimal as possible. This allows the strength and majesty of the tree to really shine through. I think these pieces allow people to look at the things commonly found in their natural surroundings in a whole new way.
Take a look around on my website and blog! You can also find me on facebook here.
Next up on the blog hop is my friend Karen Larsen. After falling in love with rug hooking in 2006, Karen began using her thirty-plus years of experience as a graphic designer to design and make patterns for hooked rugs. She has had seven articles and projects in Rug Hooking Magazine with two more on the way. She lives and breathes all things rug hooking! She blogs at Crow’s Foot Farm Designs and she will be doing her blog hop post one week from today.
Thank you for visiting and thank you Monika for inviting me to participate!