I'm taking Sharon Boggon's class Sumptuous Surfaces through Joggles.com. I've been intrigued by her freeform embroidery ever since I first set eyes on it and jumped at the chance to take this class.
The first week's assignment was to determine the Concept, or the idea, for our first piece. At first I was going to use something from the Midsummer Night CQ but after reading through the class forum and seeing all the great ideas that were coming out, I changed my mind. Many (or at least the ones posting on the class forum) of the people taking the class delved pretty deeply and came up with some personal insights and symbols that they wanted to explore. So... I did the same thing.
I sat down last night after I came home from work and put my feet up and just let my mind wander a bit. Different ideas moved through my mind and I visualised them one by one, exploring and teasing gently to see what floated out from each one. Of all the ideas that came by, the one that was foremost was the personal freedom I have felt since I moved to Phoenix. With this concept out in the open, I got my visual journal out and started playing with ideas for my concept of freedom. At first I thought I'd use something from Arizona, like a saguaro, a gecko or a sunset... but these were the symbols of Arizona, not the symbols for the personal freedom I feel here.
So... what are symbols of personal freedom to me?
- A dove flying free? Rather trite.
- A hot air balloon floating above the hills? Not quite right.
- An open door into a new life? Hmmm... this one is pretty cool.
- An open road? Ahah! This is it! The long, winding road that has brought me to Phoenix, both literally and emotionally. I would use a road disappearing over the horizon, moving from my old life to my new. So I went in search of pictures of open roads... using Google of course!
I spent several hours searching for just the right picture and finally just took pencil in hand and drew the road I've come to know best, the road from Colorado to Phoenix. That road that moves south, with the mountains to the west and the plains to the east. The road away from the familiar, from family, from the mountains... and to the new in the desert they call the Valley of the Sun.