From the Past to the Present

How Come?

Ever since I shared the post titled  How Come I’ve been thinking about my past and the influence it has had on my art. The thoughts that rambled through my mind are the inspiration for today’s post. I’m sharing this personal information not to shame any one person or to entertain your sympathy. I simply felt the need to analyze and write about the choices I’ve made through my art.

The Past

I grew up under the influence of a domineering person. Their need to control the world around them spilled over into their interaction with others. When I was a child they used every opportunity available to attempt to control my thoughts and my actions. Even after I was married they felt the need to meddle in my life. They considered my spouse and I too ignorant to make our own decisions.

Being tired of and annoyed with their controlling nature I found ways to slowly separate myself from their grasp. My drifting away frustrated the individual immensely; but I was bound and determined to find my own way.

This person was also an angry being with a very short fuse. Their explosive personality, joined by their facial expressions and the tone in their voice sent fear through my body on a regular basis. To put it simply, I was terrified of this individual.


This person has been dead for twenty years but the mental influence they exerted over me still haunts me today. The legacy they left behind has made it difficult for me to interact with other people. Conflict of any kind terrorizes me. My difficulties with personal relationships have made me both a loner and a rebel. I don’t like being told what to do or how to do it.


So how does all this play into my quilting? Well, my desire to break free from my past is fueled by my passion for improvisational piecing. Creating an original art piece without a pattern or pre-conceived plan gives me the freedom to express myself; to break free from the negativity and rigidity of my past.

This freedom spills out through my wonky designs and vibrant colors. The imperfect lines created by my art show my desire to meander through life uninhibited by negative forces. The explosion of color echoed through most of my pieces is my voice shouting to the world that I am here and very much alive.


AQ # 24_ Multicultural (another view)

Art brings the joy to my heart and the breath to my lungs that I craved as a child. Without it I would suffocate.

Thank you for your visit!

Cindy Anderson
Cindy Anderson

12 thoughts on “From the Past to the Present

  1. Thanks for sharing this intimate part of your past. I do know our experiences come through in our work, for good and for bad. The piece you show in this post is vibrant and expressive, but in a very comfortable way. I expect that is a good reflection of you.

  2. Wow Cindy that is deep and thanks for sharing your past experiences and the insight you have gained. Seems like improvisational quilting has some serious meaning for you and bravo to you for being able to explore this part of yourself!

  3. “You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul.”
    George Bernard Shaw
    The influences of our childhood are a driving force…for good and/or for bad.
    Your art reflects a beautiful soul.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts.
    It made me stop and reflect on what drives me.

  4. It’s amazing how the forces exerted on is during childhood influence our lives forever, even though they occur for a relatively short time compared to the rest of our lives.

  5. I can relate to what you are saying. My mother died when I was nine and I became someone else’s headache. Being an independent and determined child already, fostered by my mother, I was not easy to tame, and I’m fortunate that taming was the object and the conditional-love person in my life was no where near as controlling as your experience. I can see all that you are saying in your art quilts, but I have a feeling that you would have created wonderful things anyway, because the drive to create is stronger than most other things, for those who have it, and you definitely do. Thanks for sharing how you got to be the artist you are. I know there is a lot more to the story, and I’ll look for clues in your quilts. =)

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