Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Lavender Mountains

Light is a funny thing isn't it? We all know about the importance of good lighting to take photographs, and I really wish I was better at knowing how to set the aperture or whatnot on my camera to help it focus in slightly dingy lighting. The evening light to me is lovely and golden, but the camera interprets it as a blue light, casting a cold haze on things I want to photograph.
It feels like it should stay light as boy(!) wasn't it HOT today? This morning we woke up to a land of fog with a valiant sun trying to penetrate through the layers of grey mist, and it was quite chilly really; then I spent the rest of the day in a well air conditioned office, finally emerging at 5pm into what has clearly become the tropics. Quite astounding.

Hopefully it will start to cool off a bit more before bedtime, I prefer it to be cold in the room so I can snuggle under the duvet. For now though I'm quite content to sit in the garden in the last rays of sunshine, reading a magazine.

I've had to pop inside to grab the laptop though and update you on my latest stitchscape adventure. I think some of you may have seen snippets of my Mountain-scape on my Facebook page as I took it with me on holiday. This one seemed to take a long time to complete but it was probably because I had to keep putting it down to do holiday type things, It was very enjoyable though and used all of my favourite techniques.

I have to admit that I love bullion knot reed flowers, they add such a great dimension and sense of foreground to these pieces. There are a lot of bullion knots hidden around in this embroidery; smuggled in with a copious amount of French knots for texture, lined up along the edge of a fabric mountain to suggest bushes, or laid out to suggest rocks and roots.

I also found a great trick whilst I was at university of joining dots together on a polka dot pattern. It creates a fantastic all over texture and completely changes the appearance of the fabric as the dots disappeared into the thread holes. Here I've filled some in with a random pattern to suggest bushes and areas of flowers or perhaps sunshine. How would you interpret it?
Overall I try to go quite organically with how I feel about each fabric, following outlines of batik dyes, picking up colours in floral patterns, little seed stitches to help disguise and tone a busy small print; whatever floats my boat at that moment.

And also, whilst we are on the subject of finished stitchscapes, just before my holiday, I finished my Lavender Fields stitchscape. I wasn't so sure about this one if you'll remember, I mentioned my unease in this post here. Having removed a bad colour choice and started working on a different part of the design, gradually working my way back to the problem area, I feel a little happier with it. It's all a learning curve I suppose, and I would probably try this idea again, just not in the same way.

I've also experimented with a new size. The ones I have previously worked on; Kew Stitchscape and Sunset & Seaside Stitchscapes, along with the Lavender Fields are all done in a 15cm (6inch) hoop so they are relatively small. My Mountains Stitchscape was done in a 20cm (8 inch) hoop so is quite a lot bigger. I'm not sure which one I prefer, what do you think?

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