Saturday, November 21, 2015

Member Profile: Audrey Hyvonen

Audrey Hyvonen is the subject of today's member profile. When I first met Aubrey she was planning a traffic calming event in which stilt walkers carried quilts across the street at red lights. That is so cool right?

She answered a few questions so that we could learn more about her and if you want to know even more you can head over to her website or etsy shop. 

Audrey Hyvonen

When did you start making art quilts?
I learned to use my sewing machine soon after my now twelve year old was born and pretty much started making art quilts right away as I was using fabric as a medium to express and communicate.

What is your work like? What styles or techniques do you use?
I have a variety of styles that I enjoy working in. Free form appliqué with machine quilting best demonstrates my artistic intentions, but what really excites me a lot right now is a new-to-me technique of creating portraits with a gridded mosaic. It feels a bit like riding a roller coaster each time I create a piece as there is a lot of mystery and thrill in the process.

Do you have a favorite color palette?
I find that most of my work has green and gold, though in the portrait work I’m exploring a range of browns and grays. My favorite color is blue, but I rarely work in blue.
Apis & Monarda

Are you working on a particular theme or series now?
Animal portraits are my current expressive focus. I am also exploring a couple of shapes in my modern piece work and my free form appliqué work.

How do you work? What is your design process?
For the fiber mosaic animal portraits, I take or find photo that feels engaging and balanced, tweak it on my computer for stronger contrast and then apply a square grid atop of the photo. I print a few copies of that as my base and then spend a week or so cutting out one inch squares to place on my fusible grid that is mounted on a board or wall. I work in regions, sometimes linearly and sometimes in color waves. Once the image is mounted on the grid, I sew up the seams and then use thread work to adjust color and add both physical and visual texture. Once quilted, the piece is faced onto a frame I’ve constructed to fit the exact dimensions of the piece, and stretched to the back like a canvas. I feel that this elevates the piece into the art world.
King Snugglepuff Macoun

What are your sources of inspiration?
My own animals, the animals of friends, what I see when I go outside. The relationships we as humans make with other creatures.

What is your studio like and when do you like to work?
I am currently converting my garage into a quilt studio, which involves learning a lot of about construction, building and finishing work. My living room is where I work. I have a high cutting table, a small domestic sewing machine on it’s own portable table and an ironing board set up at all times. I have taped a piece of batting to one wall as a design wall and my desk spills over three other rooms. My computer work is portable and travels with me daily. I prefer to work in the morning and need frequent breaks. Working close to home allows me to be present to my family as well as present to my art which feels great for the time being.

What are your goals or aspirations for your art?
I want to see my art being enjoyed out in the world. I often feel that it comes through me, and is not always of me. It is meant to be shared.

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