Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Susan Brubaker Knapp - Mooresville, NC

1. What do you call yourself - art wise? Fiber artist, quilt designer and quilting teacher. I make both fiber art and traditional quilts; I sometimes say that I have “multiple personality quilting disorder.”
2. How do you jump start your creativity when you are in a slump? I’ve actually never had a slump. I have enough ideas to keep me hopping for several lifetimes. I have a busy family and two school-aged children, so the lack of time to create is my biggest problem.
3. If money wasn't an issue, what would you do with your art? I’d try to find a way to change the world with my art. I would love to make a difference somehow, to leave the world a slightly better place when I die.
4. Do you keep a sketchbook, journal, etc.? Well, I am trying to keep a sketchbook. I love to work in a sketchbook, but it takes a discipline I have not quite mastered yet! My “journal” – the written component of my creative life – is my blog!
5. Where can people see your other work this year? shows, books, magazines, etc The main place is my second book, “Point, Click, Quilt! Turn Your Photos into Fabulous Fabric Art,” which comes out in July from C&T Publishing. I'm also in the 700 series of Quilting Arts TV, and I have two Quilting Arts DVDs on machine quilting and thread sketching. I'll be featured on an episode of “The Quilt Show” with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims this year, too.
6. Do you teach? where? Yes, I love to teach! I teach at quilt guilds across the country, and I'll be teaching three classes at IQF-Houston this fall; in The Netherlands and at Hudson River Valley Fiber Art Workshops in 2012; and at Taupo Symposium in New Zealand in 2013.
7. Is there a particular artist who had influenced you in your art life? and why? The work of Vincent Van Gogh has always fascinated and inspired me; I think it is because it is such a pure visual expression of powerful emotion.
8. Where or what show do you hope your work will be in someday? I would love to have my work accepted at Quilt National and other high-level art exhibitions. But exhibiting is not as important to me as simply making art that I love, and that makes me want to jump out of bed in the morning and create!
9. Describe your studio workspace My studio is a 14' x 14' room that used to be a guest bedroom. A few years ago, I painted it bright red, and then I noticed that my parents stopped staying with us when they came to visit. When questioned, my mom said that sleeping there “was like sleeping in hell.” So out went the guest bed and in went my cutting table and sewing machine ... voila! I had a studio.
10. What 3 tools could you not live without? None, really. In making art, I think there is nothing indispensable except creativity, passion and time.
11. What drives you to make the work that you do? Self expression. All my art is a personal statement about my hopes and concerns for our world – primarily, the need to pay attention to and care about the beauty of the world, the miracles that are all around us every day.
12. How do you balance your life? Balance is something I strive for, but have not yet achieved. I think it is perhaps unattainable. But it is okay; I have a fabulous unbalanced, life!

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