Lisa Hinkemeyer Art Quilter

(bright music) – [Narrator] Even from a
distance, the vibrant colors and bold brush strokes
of Lisa Hinkemeyer’s art will grab your attention. But when you’re close up
you’ll get the extra surprise of finding that these
works of art are not made with paint and brushes, but with fabric and
a sewing machine. – A lot of times I guess I’ll
start with a piece of fabric with nothing on it, I’ll hang
it on the wall like a canvas. And I’ll stare at it. And then hard to explain, but
the pencil kinda takes over. When Bruce and I had the
boys, we both decided that I would be home
because our moms were home. I was adapting. And I knew I had
to find a hobby. And I was painting
murals, you know, and I was familiar with art,
but I ended up doing a quilt, a baby quilt, a baby blanket. And I enjoyed it, but
it was a little boring. And I lost interest. But I loved the sewing machine and the song of the sewing
machine and the fabric. There’s just nothing like it. Kinda always had that with
me and then I was at a store, I seen a magazine that
had said art quilts and it was very foreign to me. And I picked it up
and I bought it. And I don’t think
I’ve ever stopped. Like I could just
like do this all day. St. Francis was
almost duplicated. I was looking at an old
picture and I loved it and I wanted it to
hang in my house, so I thought perfect, you know, I’ll get the fabric
and see what happens. And then I just went about
it with really no idea what I was doing. I’m 100% self taught. But as I was doing
it, everything kinda
fell into place. The needle work, with
that quilt, even, like when I was
done I set it down, I came back and I looked
at it and I’m like, “How did I do that?” Like honestly, like I can’t
believe that I just did that. That’s crazy. And the excitement was there. Threads are really
fun to pick out too. And they make a huge difference depending on what you’re doing. As far as contrast and color, like you can really
make ’em pop. Kinda like a little
bit of abstract, ’cause I guess that my
goal is never to be so real and I don’t really
care for that look. I kinda like a little bit
of, you know fun in the work. I love to manipulate fabric. I don’t think I’ve
ever done, honestly, a quilt the same way. I’ve never like had all
my colors picked out nice before I’ve started. And had a plan and
steps that I do. I grew up in the woods. Mom and Dad had a lot of land. We planted trees. Nature was second hand. Trees, to me I kinda like
have always admired trees. My idea is to do a tree and kind of a calmer background. I can’t quite pin the exact
first tree I’ve ever did, but it came very
naturally and very easy. I personally, I see
a sky with land. And you know for
a quicker quilt, use the fabric to
your advantage. Prior to quilting ’em I
would go out in the woods, set up my easel and
I would paint trees. It had obviously dawned on me why don’t I just
paint on fabric? Fabric and canvas
are so similar. I started like taking the fabric and wrapping it around a flat
surface to put on my easel. And I would paint the
trees on the fabric. Once I got it home it
kinda gave me an idea of what I was gonna
do with that quilt. The majority of it is
layered over with fabric. I try to apply fabric
as I would paint, you know with a paint brush. I’ve always admired
art of all kind. Van Gogh, I was 35 years
old before I really knew who he was or learned
anything about him. Because his work didn’t
really interest me as younger person. Yet, thinking, you know
with my sewing machine and looking at his brush
strokes and like his colors, with a sewing machine
could you imagine? – It just flows. And I knew that I could
do that with fabric. I was doing a little
show in St. Cloud and a teacher had walked
up to me and she had so much excitement, she’s like, “It just flows, it just flows.” And she was so excited about it. I’m like “That’s how I feel.” Like, that’s how
when I was doing it. It was just like
it’s, that’s Van Gogh. There’s some excitement there. My art personally has
always been a feeling thing. And to explain it, I don’t
know that it would be possible. There’s a knowing. There’s something there and
it’s 100% it’s a feeling thing. And when I’m in that zone,
there’s nothing I love more. – [Narrator] Prairie
Mosaic is funded by the Minnesota Arts &
Cultural Heritage Fund, with money from the vote
of the people of Minnesota on November 4th, 2008. The North Dakota
Council on the Arts and by the members
of Prairie Public.