I am on an e-mail list for quilt artists. People on the list often ask questions about supplies, techniques, etc. Last week, I read and re-read this one question and response. The question is paraphrased, but the response is verbatim:
Q: I want to create a drop shadow in my work. I’ve looked at and read about different ways of doing this, but I’m not sure what would be the best technique for me?
A: "It sounds as if you have some learning to do before setting to work on your quilt.
- Does it write on top of slick surfaces like dried acrylic paint? (A requirement for my art journal.)
- Is it waterproof? Is it watersoluble?
- How long does the ink stay wet on paper?
- Can you use the tip of the pen in more than one way? (ex. thin line & fat line)
Could you read the packaging and go on the internet to find out the answers to these questions. Sure. But I think that (a) making samples helps you to remember the details of how a product works and (b) claims/reviews about products are not always true.
I have often thought about teaching a class that is highly sample-based. However, as useful and important as sample making is, I fear it's not a sexy topic that would attract students. And so I will just say to you: make samples! Label them so you can look back on them tomorrow or two years from now. Samples can become a magical shortcut when you're working on a project. Not sure what to do next? Grab your rolodex of samples and see what worked for you in the past!
I hope you'll spend the weekend making some samples. They're an art resource you can never have enough of!
Thanks for stopping by!