Beyond the Warp: Continuing Education

Lyn Hart, Editor

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Once artists have become proficient in weaving technique, begin to embrace tapestry weaving seriously, and no longer have a burning desire to take tapestry-focused workshops, basic or otherwise, what do they do to keep their work viable and evolve their artistic vision? For many professionals, such as those working in medicine or teaching, formal continuing education is required by either state or institution to keep practitioners fresh and current, but this prerequisite does not exist in the world of the self-employed artist. In seeking to explore what serious and prolific artists do, not only to stay “current” in the practice of art, but also to promote growth and evolution of creative vision and personal style, I asked two multifaceted weavers to share their perspectives and practices by pondering a series of questions.

Marilyn Rea-Menzies
Cityscape, detail


Marilyn Rea-Menzies lives in Christchurch, New Zealand. She has been painting and drawing all her life and taught herself to weave tapestry in 1980. Her tapestries have been exhibited widely both in New Zealand and overseas and feature in many public and private collections.



Tommye McClure Scanlin
Leaf Dance, detail


Tommye McClure Scanlin has been weaving since the early 1970s. Her early weavings often used methods like pick up, painting or printing on warps, and inlay techniques to create imagery. She turned to tapestry in 1988 when she was introduced to American Tapestry Alliance at the Chicago Convergence and had the chance to see the wonderful exhibit, World Tapestry Today, sponsored by ATA. She loves to find new paths to follow in image making yet keeps tapestry technique as the heart of her work.

Click on each author’s name below to read the essays

  Marilyn Rea-Menzies | Tommye McClure Scanlin