Monday, May 18, 2015

What Do I Need to Make Art

Work area in my new small studio.

It sounds simple.....The number one thing I need to work on my art is a place to work.  A studio.  As many of you know I lived in an old house for many years and it had many rooms that provided great studio spaces for both Tom and me.  In addition we build a shared studio to our for wet messy work.  During this same time we also had a studio in the mountains where we retreated on weekends.  In our new home we each a much smaller space and we are almost finished with our new shared space....I can't wait.

I tell you this because the studio is the place where things happen.  It is the place where you can explore and delve into your ideas.  You can make a mess with a purpose.  It's where you bring your ideas into the world.  If you have not found a way to make space for yourself to work where you don't have to clear the decks every time you serve a meal you are missing out on a great experience.

Design wall in my new small studio.

In addition to just having a space, I have to have a certain amount of order.  I'm not even close to be a "neat-freak" but I find it difficult to work if I have to move a bunch of stuff every time I want to work.  Junk can become a hurdle for me so I try to stay ahead of the curve.  Do I always achieve a clean space?  No.  But I try to stay on top of the mess.

I also need a design wall, a good chair, good light (that's something that needs work in my new space), and a sense of privacy.  I have worked in spaces that were very public but that isn't the best situation.  I like to explore and develop my work in my own way without always having an audience.

What else makes for a happy studio experience?  Music or silence on any given day.  Books and other materials to stimulate my thinking and support my ideas.  The internet as long as it isn't IN my space. It's too distracting.  And lets not forget whatever materials and equipment required to work in the way I want to work.

Making your space the best it can be will pay off in more productivity and a happier working experience.  I think I'll go clean something ;-)

Thank you for spending time at
Studio 24-7!

Monday, May 11, 2015


Confronting the Moon - 2006
45"x 44.75"

I was invited to speak at the recent gathering of the members of the Art Quilt Network.  I was not able to attend the meeting due to the death of my mother but I sent the program to Eleanor McCain who presented the material for me.  Thank you Eleanor.

The topic of the talk was My Personal Studio Practice.  Preparing this talk was a very interesting experience for me as my thinking of what should be included developed over time.  I wrote and rewrote and added and subtracted material right up to the time I shipped the talk to Eleanor.  \\

The original form of the talk was more focused around the actual physical things I did but it became more and more clear to me that these activities were the result of all the other things you have done in your life.  I will be taking about some of my thoughts on studio practice during the next few weeks.

I majored in art in undergraduate school but did not really begin to develop a studio practice until I entered graduate school at Clemson University.  Graduate pushes you to get your thinking, your heart and your skills in line and learn what you need to learn.  One way to get these things together is to learn to be accountable to yourself for what you need to do, learn or perhaps put aside.

As students we are often driven by assignments and deadlines.  As adults we can also be driven by shows or other commitments to "show" our work which usually comes with deadlines.  These types of pressures can be good and help you get into your studio but I think the most important type of accountability is where you are true to yourself.  This type of accountability is looking at what you have done in relation to your personal dreams and desires.  Other people may not appreciate what you want to accomplish.  They may not think you are reaching high enough or perhaps think you are over-rearching.  It doesn't matter.  The important thing is how you are meeting your personal goals.

Of course the first step is to have some goals.  


Thank you for spending time at
Studio 24-7.


Monday, April 27, 2015

Lee Verle T. Jarrard - Brief Story of My Mother

Pictured is my maternal grandmother, Cora Terry Turner, holding my mother, 
Lee Verle Turner Jarrard, as tiny infant.

My mother, Lee Verle Turner Jarrard, passed away on April 13.  She was 97 years old.  

When she was born in 1917 she weigh about 2 pounds and was put aside in a shoe box by the doctor who didn't think she would live.  My great-grandmother, Lilly Austin Terry, had other ideas and packed her with hot water bottles and mother survived.

Mother never met her father and he never saw her.  He was in the army in New Mexico when she was born and died before he was able to come home.  My mother always had a certain sadness over not having her father but transfered that love to her grandfather Doc who she spoke of often.

Mother loved to talk about her childhood growing up on Victor Mill Village in Greer, SC.  Anyone who heard her might have thought she was talking about Disneyland.  She never forgot her Victor friends, all their families, who married who and all the other gossip that floats around a small community.

Lee Verle T. Jarrard

After high school mother attended Limestone College in Gaffney, SC but it was the great depression and she had to leave after only one semester.  She then attended business school.  She met and married our father, John C. Jarrard, after taking a position as a bookkeeper with Slater Mfg. in Slater, SC.  

My parents had a wonderful marriage.  They enjoyed entertaining their employees and family with cookouts and swim parties.  They traveled and made friends wherever they went including one of the actors from Hawaii Five 0 who they met while on a visit in Hawaii.  They were partners in everything they did including building a business in Marietta, SC.  Jarrard Hardware & Furniture is still in business today although owned by a gentleman who bought the business and wanted to keep the name as it was well known in the area.  My father passed away in 1982 and mother continued as head of the business until the late 1980's.

Both of my parents loved people and when mother retired she was always up for a drive to eat out, visit someone, or help a friend.  She was available to take her friends to appointments, plays, concerts and church events.  She was the designated driver for her group until age 90.

Mother is survived by a half brother, four children, 2 daughter-in-laws, 1 son-in-law, 5 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren.  At her memorial service I was happy to see children of her friends and the many people she taught in Sunday School over the years.  

I always admired my mother for her intelligence and her love and generosity of service to her church, community and family.  She had a rich and successful life and is missed.


Monday, April 6, 2015

What Size Are You?

Barn Door - Terry Jarrard-Dimond
80" x 80" - Hand Dyed Fabric

The first few fabric pieces I made were traditional quilts and as such were made a size that would fit a bed.  They were made in units so it wasn't difficult to made a large just kept adding units.  

As my work developed and I began to think of this work as more than a bed quilt, the work became smaller. The direction of the work was less clear and more experimental.  My first large art piece, Barn Door pictured above,  was indeed large at 80" x 80".  I loved working at that scale and have since made a number of very large works.  

Untitled - Terry Jarrard-Dimond
12" x 12" - Charcoal and Stitching

As I moved ahead in my work, working small became more of a challenge for me but lately I've become more interested in what can be achieved in a small format.  The three new works pictured are about 12" square.  They will be matted and framed which is how I think works of this size in fabric look best.

This week I saw a link to an artist I did not know, Thomas Nozkowski.  Actually I had seen some of his work but his name didn't stick.  Now it will.  Here's a link to a nice interview with him.

Untitled - Terry Jarrard-Dimond
12" x 12" - Charcoal and Stitching

Nozkowski has many things to say of interest but one that caught my attention was the fact that some years ago he made the decision to work on a smaller scale than is the usual at the time in New York galleries.  He said he wanted to work at a scale that would fit in his friend's apartment.  I loved that.

Untitled - Terry Jarrard-Dimond
12" x 12" - Charcoal and Stitching

I'll bet many of you are like me in that you have a stack of large works that will not fit anywhere except in a gallery.  OK, I admit that I am sitting right next to that first large piece I spoke about but our new house has unusually high ceilings and lots of wall space.  I have sold a couple of large works but most people can't afford them even if they have walls big enough to hang them.

So what size are you?  What are your feelings about the size of work?  Does the size of a work make it more or less important?  How do you feel about having stacks of large pieces that can't be shown in many shows because of size limitations?  How do you feel about having to pay $$$ to ship these works if you get into a show?

Thanks for spending time at
Studio 24-7!

Monday, March 30, 2015

My Personal Studio Practice and Art Quilt Network

Midnight Garden - Terry Jarrard-Dimond
Fabric, Charcoal and Stitching

I'm excited to have been invited to talk at the semi-annual meeting of The Quilt Art Network in Columbus, Ohio in April.  This group of creative and dedicated artists grew from a smaller group headed by Nancy Crow and Linda Flower back in 1987 and now has a membership in access of 80.

My topic will be "My Personal Studio Practice".  This sounded like an easy topic but it has proven to be more of a challenge than expected and a much broader topic than I first imagined.  I will also be working with participants hands on and look forward to a great 3 days


Regarding my studio practice, we have continued to try and clear the way in our new location to get back to some kind of normal schedule and I can just see the light ahead.  I have managed to begin some work in a couple of different directions which is encouraging.  One of the biggest challenges is to get the big studio sorted out.  We have done most of the really hard work or I should say, Tom has done most of the hard work, but we still haven't cleared the space and set up shop.  We reached a point where we just had to take a break and take care of other parts of life.

Thanks for sticking in there with me.  I have several artists in mind for profiles I want to do soon and will be posting new work when it is ready.


Thanks for stopping by
Studio 24-7!