At Mr X Stitch we love to review textile art and embroidery books for you. There are so many great books to discover, packed with needlework inspiration and textile techniques, so we dive into each book to find out what’s good, what’s bad and let you know why you should pick it up.
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The Motherhood of Art, written by Marissa Huber and Heather Kirtland is published by Schiffer Publishing Ltd. This hardback publication celebrates mothers and showcases how many have been successful at balancing art with caring for their children. Many styles of art are discussed, including dyeing, painting, weaving and embroidery.
About The Authors
Both of the women who have written this book are practicing artists themselves and have also collaborated on a website to bring together women, especially mothers.
Who Is This Book Aimed At?
Mothers who may feel that they have no time for art now that they have children to look after. This book conveys real life examples, working models of how other mothers have managed to still carve out artistic careers whilst having children.
Firstly lets look at the contents page:
The artists who are involved in this book are clearly listed within this contents.
We will now go through a few highlights from this publication….
Weaving is one of the art types found within this book. It can become a popular activity for many recently, often discussed in home and lifestyle magazines as well as textile based ones. The artists showcased within this section have allowed photographs of their hand drawn plans as well as their finished pieces, which is a nice touch.
Then imagery of the finished piece can be found…..
So the authors here make good visual connections between the planned pieces and the finished versions. This is all a part of the books overall ethos – encouraging mothers to take up art.
We see a lot of stylised imagery throughout this publication. As a book it is A4 in size and comprises of 192 pages. Thus it is a coffee worthy volume to own. This makes the photography important as it has to be appealing, to tempt an audience to pick it up. Lets look at a few examples of the imagery….
WIP images are captured throughout. We focused on this one, as it is stitch based. Looking at the embroidery explored here, again the message is simple – art doesn’t have to be complex or time consuming, simple hand embroidery can be mastered with kids around.
Following on from the slow stitch WIP example above, we discover ways of using the stitches, captured well to showcase the beauty in the simplistic. This patchwork / boro example works well, with zoomed in focus points as well as whole garment imagery.
What Makes The Book Special?
The versatile nature of this publication, along with its very direct focus makes it niche yet successful as a book. We uncover so many different lifestyles, experiences and art types, yet they all are under the motherhood umbrella. Many women profess not to have time for art once they have children – the authors fight against this is a subtle manner, showing how it is possible. Encouragement is vocalised throughout, making even those who are not child blessed take note – we can all find a place and time for art, we just need to make the time, plan it.
We also enjoyed the natural nature of many of the art types. many surround the traditional, yet are timeless. take natural dyeing as one example. Could we be doing pans of dyeing whilst the children are safe too? The choice is yours.
Anything Wrong With The Book?
If you do not have children, you may feel that this book isn’t worth reading as it does not apply to you. However no matter our gender or life course, we can all enjoy the real life examples and enticing imagery within this book.