Thursday, December 06, 2012

Part IV: Choosing Titles

Now I had two new quilts and two older quilts to enter in the SAQA Deux exhibit. The two new quilts needed titles. This was an opportunity for me to tie all four quilts together a little more. Clearly, they all include similar elements, colors and techniques, but similar titles would be nice.

So the two older quilts...
 Spontaneity and Stability

 Fence and Flourish

Both of these quilts were made while I was planning and moving from Texas to Maryland. They are about the positive and negative feelings and experiences that surround a move. The titles both contain two words beginning with the same letter. The words loosely suggest contrasting ideas, but also may refer to actual design elements in the quilt.

I wanted to use this same format for the two new pieces. 

I spent lots of time jumping from word to word in the thesaurus. I made lists of ideas and feelings to consider. I also looked at synonyms for house, rock, horizon, tree, sun, river, plant, tree, etc.

Eventually, I settled on two titles that I think work very well.

Haze and Hope

 Shelter and Stream

I especially like words that have multiple meanings. Flourish might refer to a plant blooming or to emotional growth. Haze could refer to foggy colors, but also to feelings of confusion. The viewer clearly recognizes "stream" in those ripply shapes, but another definition is to flow, pass, or send forth.

Theoretically, the titles of the work will not affect whether the juror will select my quilts for the show, but I do think it's another small element that adds cohesion to a body of work. 

Tomorrow I'll make some confessions about photography and talk about online entry forms.

Do you use similar formats or concepts for your titles? Do you think I'm over thinking it?


Diana Pease said...

Finding a title for a quilt or other piece of Art can be the most difficult part of the whole process for me.............unless something just jumps out and speaks. Love to see your work.

Kristin L said...

No, you're not over thinking it -- you're adding depth and cohesion, just as you say. It may not be absolutely necessary for the titles to work together like they do, but it is a nice detail and adds to the group as a whole.

Alison Schwabe said...

I personally think a well thought title is extremely important as it is in effect a mini statement, offering clues to your intention and the viewer's possible interpretation.

Charlotte Scott said...

I absolutely agree with all the comments above.

I'm currently struggling with a title for a quilt (not even finished yet). I want it to show that there was more to the idea of making of it than what you might see at first glance.

You've done really well with your titles.

Sarah Ann Smith said...

My quilts usually name themselves, and are usually quite simple. Those that don't tell me their names, well, I struggle with those. As for Haze, my first thought was the standard DC (and therefore Annapolis area, too) summer weather forecast: hot, hazy and humid with a chance of late afternoon thundershowers!