Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Today, a group of fiber artists questioned the meaning of "UFO's", those art pieces that you start but can't seem to finish. Do we really need to finish every art quilt we start? Is it a character flaw? Do deadlines effect how likely you are to finish a piece?How can we set ourselves up for success (completion) in the future? Please respond on the subject at the blog site. We will give away a set of Shiva Iridescent Primary Color Paintsticks (6 pack) at the next meeting, September 21, 2010. Winners will be drawn from name of SAQA MN members who respond to this blog inquiry. 


  1. If you are going to create art, you are going to ask a lot of "What If?" questions of your materials and techniques. Often times the answer the piece gives you is not what you expected. Then you have the option letting the piece evolve in a new direction, or setting it aside as an UFO. So it is ok to have UFOs.

    After a period of time, some of my UFOs do get completed. There might be a challenge or exhibit that is consistent with the theme of an UFO, and I am inspired to finish it.

  2. I agree that it's okay to have UFOs. Sometimes they serve as "working pieces" or as inspiration for future works. I figure as long as I finish some of what I start I don't feel guilty. One never knows which of the UFOs will turn out to be worth finishing down the road a bit. "Works-in-progress" is what I prefer to call my UFOs.

    Think about this: Writers generate lots of words (or pages) every day, but certainly don't publish it all--and no one would want them to!! One never knows, though, whether that beautiful sentence produced five years ago might not end up as the opening sentence in a prize-winning best-selling novel five years hence.

    Some cheese gets better as it ripens. Some words gain importance as time passes. Fiber pieces are the same--best contemplated and acted on thoughtfully, or, some?--not at all. I don't think one makes that decision consciously. I think it's our muse that decides.

  3. I prefer the term WIP (Works in Progress) many of my pieces can take years from beginning concept to completion. Not everything is a competition and some ideas take a lot of time to be executed somethings due to lack of specific skills to get the idea out of my head and into fabric.

    As an example, I just finished an art quilt that was started in mid 2002. This piece moved from my design wall into three different studios before I finally added the final image and did all the dense handquilting this year.