Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Nearly there .......

For the last couple of months (yes I know, I know, but I need a lot of thinking time) I have been busy creating some fantasy trees, which are heavily influenced by the brilliant work of Kay Nielsen, who was born in Denmark in 1886 and died in 1957. He illustrated childrens books and my piece is from an illustration of his from the book Twelve Dancing Princesses. Obviously I haven't put twelve dancing princesses in mine!
I started off dyeing several pieces of cotton in jam jars, for the background. I love the way the colours merge and create 'magic' on the cloth. Then, using kozo, I stitched down loads of skinny tree trunks, and embellished a couple of tree tops using lilac and green sheer organzas. The tree on the right (over the organza) is 3 sections of 'peeled' silk hankie, the tree in the middle is lutradur, cut into pieces with a soldering iron and painted several times, and the tree on the lower left hand side is lace, with the top covered with shaped raw silk throwsters waste. The trunks near this are paper string, topped with felted wool shapes. Not a lot has happened here, except that a lot is stitched down and there are refelted tree tops on the top left hand side and a tree top on the top right hand side made from raw throwsters waste but with the gum still in, so all I did was spray some with water, shape it and press it dry (just like making silk paper from gummed cocoon strippings)

I'm getting there now, and this shows where I am at the moment, together with my working drawing. I am pleased to see/say that as I have progressed, the piece gets less and less like the original drawing. There is actually some hand stitching (single lazy daisy stitch worked in silk thread) in the tree tops on the top left hand side. I will be hand stitching the tree top on the right hand side too, with seeding stitch.

I've been playing around with the forest floor, with some various paints and deciding if I will put a 'point of interest' in somewhere - to replace the twelve dancing princesses I guess!
Anyway, I painted and cut out this little deer from some lutradur, which I reckon I will use, and also tried out some 'rocks/stones' from some silk paper (cocoon strippings). I decided I don't like the paint much - doesn't really go. Just as well I tried it on a bit of scrap fabric!

I'm still thinking, but I rather like the way the little deer wraps around the tree trunk, which is made from peeled layers of silk rod, as are the whispy bits of 'grass'. It is only pinned at the moment, but unless I come up with any other ideas, I shall be stitching the whispy bits down and adding some stones here and there, and I guess it will then be finished. Oh - I shall add a couple or so painted stars in the sky for good measure! It measures 20" x 30".
I'm now thinking about the next piece ........ so until next time (another couple of months no doubt!)