Melody Money – Boulder, Colorado, USA
For me what makes a piece of art sing is a combination of the details, and the quality of the light. I try to celebrate everyday moments. The wind through the grass, birds in flight, the way the light makes snow shimmer, light reflected on water, the musicality of starlight are all images full of radiance. I love the process of many small details coming together to form an essence of a place in time. The journey is as important as the finished piece. I am motivated to take a medium that is traditionally worked on a smaller scale and expand it to a larger vision. I welcome the opportunity to go over the top with detail. The use of textiles has enabled me to incorporate texture into my paintings. The fabric softens the edges and warms the final piece. But mostly for me, it is about the shimmer of the light. I try to capture that moment of grace when the angle of the light will resonate. I want to share an appreciation of the quiet loveliness of everyday moments.Interview
(Click images to enlarge)
SAQA: When did you begin making art with fabric? Do you work in other media as well?
MONEY: I have always been interested in making art. I started my first quilt with my grandmother’s supervision at age eight. I studied art in college where we were required to take drawing, painting, and sculpture. Silk screen became my medium of choice. It was at Art School in San Francisco that I discovered a love of paint and print on fabric. I loved how the fabric softened the edges and warmed a painting. I also enjoy plein air pastels.
SAQA: What inspires you?
MONEY: I am inspired by the natural world, and the play of light. I like to celebrate quiet moments, to put a focus on everyday, sometimes overlooked, nearly invisible events.
SAQA: Have any artists or art movements influenced your work?MONEY: I have always loved Japanese Wood Block prints. I also love Monet’s use of color, and Klimt’s color and patterning.
SAQA: What techniques and materials do you use?
MONEY: Most pieces start with hand painting on fabric. Sometimes I dye my own fabric, if I can’t find what I am looking for, but often I paint on already printed commercial fabric. I like to work in cotton, and more and more, in silk. There is something very seductive about the way silk takes color. I also use hand wrapped and plyed threads in my work. I have found with the wrapped threads, I can have great variations and control of the color. Hand beading is also an important part of my work. All those small details coming together to form a whole makes my heart sing.
SAQA: Where do you create?
MONEY: I have a large studio in my home with a view of the Flatirons near Boulder, Colorado. Having a studio in my home is both a blessing and a curse. I frequently work 12 hour days, as I lose track of the time, and it is not unusual to find me there at all hours of the night, especially when a piece is nearing completion.SAQA: How do you reconcile the art-making and business sides of your creative life?
MONEY: The business side is the most challenging for me. I love to create new works, and it’s difficult to leave the studio. I try to catch up on the paperwork late at night, when the light has faded and color work is harder. (Not to mention how hard it is to thread those tiny beading needles at night!)
SAQA: What are you working on now? What’s next?
MONEY: I like to work on several pieces concurrently. Right now I am working on a wall hanging textile for my first grand baby. I am also working on a piece in a Meadow Series, and experimenting with beading on chiffon.
I plan to continue to explore new techniques and refine skills. My current obsession is working with sheer fabrics, and playing with translucence.