Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Some new beginnings

Neki from A movable feast has been working on an exciting series and mentioned how many pieces she works on for a series. This has made me think about my working method. The problem is I seem to need to try out new things and although I sometimes consider doing a series on a particular theme that is as far as it has progressed. The truth of the matter is probably just that I have so much to learn in technique and design before I can possibly begin to think in terms of a series.

However to move on to what I have been doing in the last couple of weeks - well, not much really- but I have started a couple of 'new' pieces. The first one is based on a drawing I did of some gumtrees that I can see from my workroom window. I tacked the design onto linen with the intention of using it for my TIF challenge in January last year. I did make an unacceptable attempt and spent some time with the quick unpick and it has been sitting in the box ever since just waiting for inspiration . Could I do it in straight stitch in the style of some of Jan Beaney's work that I admire? Could I try some pulled thread stitches to show the bark changes across the trunk? Or even some blackwork? Talk about the dabbler in everything but the master of none!

I am not sure what eventually inspired me - perhaps an abstract from Edna Wark's book on pulled thread, perhaps Sue Dove, perhaps both of them. I do know I intend to use some pulled thread stitches for the background. At the moment I am considering the possibility of only working one trunk as two might be just too much for the space - 6 x 4" if I want to add pulled thread.

The next piece is another that has been also languishing in the box - I was given Trish Burr's book for my birthday also in January 2008. While I like to work designs of my own I feel that for some techniques I need to follow instructions, at least for the first piece in that particular technique and thread painting falls into this category. I bought a cheap canvas mounted on a wooden frame - traced the rose from Trish's book and stapled the calico onto the frame and then carefully removed the original canvas - collected the floss that was needed. - 5 greens, many pinks and a number of gold shades. This then also sat quietly in the box waiting for me to feel confident enough to start. Well, this week I needed some colour to brighten up my stitching moments so maybe it was time.

More to larn! This is a departure from my usual working method as it needs to be stab stitched and, although I usually use a hoop, it is loose enough for me to scoop stitch. It took me a little while to manage the technique for the stem stitch stems but suddenly it fell into place. Sadly I have not done enough to photograph - just a stem with its nasty little thorns and the split stitch outlining of the leaves.

I love working in monochrome but every so often I feel the need for colour. The thread painting colour is sandwiched between the gum trees and my whitework sampler which is progressing slowly.

When I began the hardanger pieces I intended to cut them out and make a pincushion or biscornu. However I added my drawn thread squares to the same piece of linen. So after deciding it was a learning sampler I needed consider the total design and see if I could make it a half reasonable piece of work. Not sure I will succeed but these latest little hardanger squares may help the process. I want to try various needleweaving ideas from The complete book of Hardanger by Janny Geldens . This interesting book I have borrowed from the library is full of new ideas for me to try. I am hopeful that some of these hardanger techniques can carry over into other drawn thread work I would like to pursue.


Miss 376 said...

It was so nice to see the whole piece with the needleweaving and drawn threads. Look forward to seeing how you get on with the needlepainting

karen said...

this piece is stunning! I love, love, love it!

Paula Hewitt said...

very nice. I have the same approach as you - cant imagine when id be able to settle into a series. I like the way the gum trees are progressing - looking forward to seeing it

neki desu said...

the top one merits a series :)
it has stilla lot to say