This is a record of this way of working with colour in its most simple form.
- Select subject – clear shapes and lots of tonal contrasts. Colour palette is restricted, so is the texture. Should have photographed without the front stuff and before the sun went down!
- hand stitch. This is the main source of colour, but can not be too dense or the machine will grumble. Use direction to give ideas of form and textures.
- Threads – muted range, chosen more for tonal value and warm/cool values than hue. (the purples were far more brown and dull, the end colour is dark olive!)Aviod plain grey – too stark, use more sophisicated colours. One or two stronger colours for get out jail free cards, but to be used sparingly.
- First layer- establish main tonal zones, vary stitch patterns to create more separation.
- Second layer – highlights and shadows, working in a variety of ways to build surfaces.Spot the vertical lines, cross hatching, wriggly squirms and zigzags.
- Top dressing – final tweaks, adding details, evaluating and finishing. This style has to be at a distance- pin up, make coffee and walk towards it to make sure the contrasts and values work.
- Drink coffee. Still need to press it. Later will do.
These method at this scale is relatively quick and surprisingly effective. This mini series is part of the Falling Light family of woodland studies so this style which encourages me to emphasise tone works well. This little beastie was done in a morning – or would have been if I remained focussed (blame Wimbledon and the Tour de France). I find it quite limiting so the selection has to be strong enough but without too much fuss. The limited palette range could be expanded at will though I like the simplicity of focussing on tone – been doing a lot of pencil drawing at the moment so I guess the two disciplines are cross pollinating again. Scale is a problem – bigger means more time hand stitching and the need for more complex stitch patterns.