Working through a Project

Stained glass artist, Anne-Renee’ Livingston of Virginia Beach, VA created a design which I have interepreted into a pattern for rug hooking (it has also been used by a quilter, ceramist, woodworker, and digital photographer but that is another post).  My title for the pattern is “Mountain Treeline” and it measures 12″ x 24″.  The first time I approached the design I used a bright Fall palette. 

 

Then I added one more tree and called it “All 4 Seasons” using a bright cheery turquoise sky.  This post is about the neutral colorway and my decision making steps for a third interpretation.  

    

I like to select as much variety in values, including textural and solid fabrics and not photographed but included are several yarns — alpaca neutrals spun in Hampshire County at Capon Bridge Fiber Works.   Although I call this a “neutral” version it is more towards warm range from natural through deep chocolate and cool jolts of black and gray with some excitement thrown in by the yellow family.

As I got hooking/creating each tree spoke to where it was in the line up, two on left are on another rise beyond one field, the front row definitely has some out in front and others taking back stage.  The brightest (off white) is not the immediate center image, therefore not hitting the viewer in the face and stopping your eye from moving around.  I remembered to experiment with textures behind solids if they are similar in value, adding to the depth.  

Here is where there was a change and some pulling out.  The farthest right tree anchored the edge with a flat gray yarn.  By switching the textured and lighter wool in the tree third from right with the gray I gave a darker value behind the gold  and lighter ending to the righthand edge. 

Second version strong line

First I thought to create some interest by leaving a line of dark gray in the textured tree only.  But that is too strong and drew my eye only to the “branch”. 

removed line

Removed it and hooked the yarns between the two sections instead, better.

Skyline and foreground in golds

 One last decision was the choice of foreground fabrics.  I was certain the golds would be great pulling into all fields that hue and even went to the extent of stitching the two pieces onto the linen backing.  But it just didn’t ring to me.  

The selection of gray plaid for the small field on left and then brown/black plaid as the foreground seems to anchor the design, invite you to view the details, and be drawn all the way to the interesting skyline in the background.   

  I am going to stretch this piece around artist stretcher bars and hand stitch wool around the edges to complete it as the other two are, simple and all fiber. Comments in the form of critiques are welcome.  Question I would pose is would you have stopped sooner in my process and called it finished?

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About Susan L. Feller

Artist, educator, author, curator
This entry was posted in elements and design in art, Fiber Musings, hooked rugs, textile art and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Working through a Project

  1. Lori LaBerge says:

    If the piece did not “ring to you”, the decision to continue was the right one. I like both versions, but love the second. The first version is beautiful, but may be a little more predictable as the trees are “sandwiched” between the gold colors. The second version really opens up the trees and makes them the true focus. The gray plaids on the bottom are a surprise (something I love in a piece) which really set this piece nicely and show off the artist in you. Love it!

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