Sunday, 1 January 2017

Exploring Textures and Utilising Thread-Ends

Over the holidays, I have been working steadily on my textile piece (in between hanging with friends and family of course). I have continued to experiment and explore various new techniques. I am not planning anything, I am just working it out as I go along, which is keeping the process fresh and fun. Every now and then something doesn't quite work and I have a bit of unpicking to do, but it's a great way to learn.

I spent time on the foreground over Christmas, incorporating the iron railings and gateposts. These are elements which weren't on the original sketch, but I felt that the church needed something at the front to 'pin' it to the background. I found the railings when I looked up photographs of the original church (fortunately, I wrote it's name on the sketch).

I developed the area around the front steps further as well, flowing the church into the foreground.

I have also been experimenting further with the trees. I really love the texture of the plastic weave I sewed in earlier, but with such a rich tonal range developing everywhere else, the trees looked flat. I tried using layers of organza, tacked with little crosses in different colours, but it wasn't enough. That's when I got out my little bags of thread-ends.

I have been keeping the waste as I finish each thread. I didn't know what for, I just thought they might make for an interesting texture at some point. I spread them onto the most shadowed area of the trees and pinned them in place under a layer of organza.

I was going to sew it in place with more of the little crosses, but I was worried they might get lost and just create a visual muddle. Then I got the idea of echoing the wriggle of the threads in a linear stitch. It took quite a while, but I really like the effect and the tree tones now work with the rest of the piece.

All these intense textures and fine detail are in contrast to the simple impact of colour in the top half, which is where I have begun introducing the text:

I am surrounding the church on both sides with a quote by poet Charles Bukowski, which expresses very well my feelings on the nature of belief. The text sits in much more space than on my first 'train commuters' piece so, to stop it rattling around on all that background colour, I rough-cut pieces of my gold organza to seat it on, before back-stitching the wording on top.

I have very, very nearly finished it, but I ran into a snag: half way through the text, I ran out of the navy embroidery thread. Darn it. Fresh supplies are on their way, so normal business will be resumed shortly. In the meantime, I am thinking about what to do for my next piece...


Eleanor Patrick said...

It's looking real good! It also reminds me of making banners for a church where I was the organist many years ago. Very satisfying!

Lynne the Pencil said...

Thanks Eleanor. Yes, I'm finding it extremely satisfying. I love the slower speed of the process (much, much slower than my drawing)- time to think as I work about my next move!

I can't wait to get the last little bit finished! then I'll take a proper photo of the whole thing.

Margaret B. said...

Hi Lynn. Each section of your sewn art appears as a masterpiece in its own right. It's looking really good and if I lived closer I'd give you packets of leftover "bits and bobs". Continue to thrive and enjoy.

Lynne the Pencil said...

Thanks so much Margaret. Yes, one lovely surprise is how well little sections work individually, when you isolate them. Glad you're enjoying watching it unfold along with me :-)

Linda said...

Really beautiful! Happy New Year and warm greetings from Montreal, Canada. :)

Lynne the Pencil said...

Thanks so much Linda. Happy New Year to you too!