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Polly Bech



Delaware County

I've been making stuff most of my life, in one form or another - paintings, clothing, collage, computer graphic art - but I didn't actually try to make a quilt until I was almost 30 years old. It took me awhile to get the hang of it, since I was raising my children while working on quilts a few hours a week. Something about the whole process of constructing a quilted art piece just worked for me, so I kept working at making them. Most of my recent pieces have started with solar printing my own fabric. I collect leaves in my yard, or on my walks through town, and take prints of them on fabric. Starting with plain white cotton, I apply sun-sensitive paint, lay leaves onto the fabric, then place it in the sun to dry. The prints occur as the sun dries the fabric. These prints capture the essence of nature for me, since we are surrounded by trees where I live in a small town outside of Philadelphia. A love of, and respect for, the natural world has been a theme in my life, and can be seen in my work. I also just love playing with color schemes, light and dark, mixing this traditional art form of quilting with newer surface design techniques. And I love to hand quilt while listening to a good book or podcast, or watching streaming video. While I relished the pioneering aspect of working in the computer graphics field in the early 1980's, I also love the connection to the past that I feel when working with my hands, creating with cloth, needle, and thread.