|Denise Losczyk, April's Challenger
Denise Losczyk accepted our April Desire to Inspire Challenge with Barbara Jones of QuiltSoup's collection, "Are We There Yet?" And here is her fantastic results! Be sure to comment below the blog to celebrate this accomplishment!
|"Are We There Yet?" fabric
My husband Ron and I recently moved to Camp Verde, Arizona. It is a very friendly town officially located in the geographic center of the state. It is known for its many pecan trees, annual Pecan and Wine Festival, and for its annual Fort Verde Days celebration which is held at the Fort Verde State Park, located in Camp Verde.
We enjoy walking, gardening, observing nature, and tending to our new orchard and pecan tree. Ron is the main gardener, and I am his assistant. I loved gathering our first pecans from our tree this past fall. They have become a staple in our diet! Our new home is in a nice location, it is semirural, we have the benefits of walking in a small town, and having our own mini farm (no animals though!). We are enjoying our new life on our one acre lot that is irrigated, which is unusual in a high desert environment.
With our new home came my beautiful studio space. It has a walk in supply closet, and plenty of natural light. Working on this quilt was a great way to begin creating in the new studio.
|Denise starts getting creative!
Quilting has become my main art form. I made my first quilt top at age sixteen, from lessons from my Grandma Hazel Bell, while visiting on her Iowa farm one summer. She taught my cousin Jean and me how to quilt. I made a nine-patch quilt using gingham and floral scraps left over from sewing clothes. We made cardboard templates for cutting out the squares, drawing around each template with a pencil. This was before rotary cutters were widely used. Some blocks were stitched by hand and some by machine. The quilt is unfinished, as I wasn’t sure about my color choices at the time. I may have to go back and complete it one day!
|Finished full quilt
I’ve always had the need to be creating and making something. As a youth I took art classes, and later went on to study in college and received a BFA and MFA in Art. I created in many different media, including photography, video, audio, drawing, and photo silkscreen, but I’ve always been drawn back to the textile arts. I believe it is because I’ve been surrounded by textile creations, quilts, crochet, embroidery and tatting all my life. I love incorporating many of the skills I’ve learned in other media in fiber art. I consider myself an art quilter, though I believe all quilts are art, especially when we create our own designs and manifest them in fabric, utilizing the incredible art of fabric designers.
|Close up of quilting
I love designing my own quilts using my imagination and incorporating traditional quilt blocks. One of my favorite design tools is the EQ7 Quilt program. My favorite techniques are using piecing and applique together and embellishing with embroidery, beading, needle-felting, and tatting. There is always a new technique to learn and explore. I love entering quilt challenges and shows, fabric challenges are fun, because the fabric inspires the quilt design. Many of my quilting skills were acquired from reading books and watching quilt videos.
Also, much can be learned just from experimenting with fabric. I learned quite a bit from watching videos on www.QNNTV.com and I am a member of an online site: www.thequiltshow.com. I also belong to SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) www.saqa.com.
|Another close-up of the quilting
After arriving in Camp Verde in September of last year, I entered a quilt in the 2016 Camp Verde Quilt Show, which was on display in conjunction with the annual Fort Verde Days celebration in October. The Camp Verde Quilt Show is held every two years. It is a non-juried show and is open to all quilters in the area. We were invited to meet with the Quilt Show Planning Committee and Ron and I helped with setting up the show. It was a wonderful welcome to our new town and a great way to make new friends. We have meetings monthly to share ideas for the show, visit and share projects we are working on. I shared my “Are We There Yet” work in progress with them earlier this month and they loved the fabric!
|Reversible Mug Rug # 1
|Reversible Mug Rug #2
I feel like I’ve discovered a pot of gold in Camp Verde. I’ve met many more quilters here in this small town than while living for several years in a large city, or even in my hometown in Iowa. People are very warm and welcoming here.
More of my creations can be viewed on the gallery page on my blog at: www.dbl-art-design.com. Also, please visit my Facebook page at Denise.Losczyk, and my Instagram page @dblosczyk, for art work, and views from our daily life.
You can find out more about Camp Verde by visiting www.visitCampVerde.com.
Thank you for the fun experience of being the April Desire to Inspire Challenger! I hope my creations have inspired you!