Saturday, July 25, 2009
I sensed a sadness and a sweetness to Teresa the minute she walked in the room and both proved true. She was soft spoken and a little shy in the beginning but came to life as she talked about creating her quilt. This is her first quilt. I think the thing that impressed me the most was her desire to tell the stories of her life. She shared that she is not a very good writer but she thinks she can tell her stories with quilts. I can only hope she gets the chance. I also thought it was interesting that she created her quilt from the outside in. She started with the border.
I think the other thing that shocked me was to discover that Ohio does not have a self-defense law so she is serving a sentence for manslaughter. People have been asking me why I didn't ask more questions concerning what they did, why they did it, etc. I was encouraged by the prison to ask why they were there and I was happy that I could. It is part of their story and the story of their quilt. However, it was not the reason I was there. I tried hard not to show anything but openness which was hard. I try hard when I do interviews to keep myself out of it.
I always show everyone their photos to make sure that they are happy and I can't believe both of us missed that she had her eyes closed. I truly wish I could go back and retake the photos because she has such nice eyes.