Tag Archives: quilt judging

Thoughts on a Rejected Quilt

Cracked Ice will not be seen at QuiltCon.

I thought it had potential (of course I did, or I wouldn’t have submitted it), but it will stay home when I go to view those that had more than potential.

About a day before getting the rejection email, I read an interesting blog post about confidence and art by Elizabeth Barton. (Here is a link to the whole.) The short version is this: there is correlation between confidence and marketing skill, but not between improved confidence and improved art. When I read her “If it’s getting easy, it is probably getting trite,” I thought of how quickly the idea of Cracked Ice had formed, and I had a moment of wondering if it was “oh so last show.” That may have been my only moment of self doubt.

I had a flashback to college teaching days, to students who had been at the top of their high school classes and to their surprise that in college freshman writing they were only average. Their peers had shifted and so had their rank. My quilt had had a similar shift from being admired by friends and followers of my blog to being one among many that had been so admired.

Not having a smart phone, I missed the discussion of the judging on Instagram, but I enjoyed the analysis Elizabeth Eastmond provided and ensuing discussion.(Here is a link to the whole.) Among other things, she mentioned not limiting the number of entries per person and the ambiguity of definition of modern quilt design. And comments pointed out the difficulty of defining an evolving moment. I rather agree. If modern quilting becomes easy to define, it will become trite. “Follow the rules and create a modern quilt” is not where we want to end up.

Other bloggers pointed to Latifah Saafir’s discussion of the jurying process, which I think is a must-read piece (link here) for anyone entering any juried show. One year at Quilt National a process similar to the one Latifah describes was presented. Off in the corner was a video screen. The audience was to pretend to be a juror. ¬†Quilts were flashed on the screen for a very limited number of seconds, and we were to say “Yes,” “No,” or “Maybe.” Then go back and discuss our “Maybe” category with others who were watching at the time. I can never look at juried shows or at my own quilt entries the same after having participated in that demonstration.

Am I disappointed? Of course I am. Do I like my quilt any less? Not one bit.



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