Color Doodles and Lots of Lie-Downs

It turns out not only Kaz is there in the UK online guild, but so are Cally (well, of course!), Leigh and Peg, and Dot who provides computer help there is most probably the Dot of Fibre to Fabric. Nice, eh?

But the color scheme has been a struggle. At first I thought I'd use some of the paler yarns I already have to quasi-guarantee the outcome will be harmonious and just overdye, and save myself some money at the same time. However, it is Kaz's colors' brilliance I fell in love with when Dianne first lead me to Kaz's blog, so I might as well go all the way and start with a white yarn and dye brilliant colors. (Having said that, as you can well imagine, I've been going back and forth on this one, but today, I'm telling myself it's no-pain-no-gain.)

I mean, just look at Kaz's Gallery, Page 2. Number 18 has been one of my all time favorite pics of any handwoven cloths ever, Number 15 a close second, though it's Number 17 that really shows off the two separate techniques sitting harmoniously together. Interesting how I love other weavers' vibrant cloths, but prefer to weave more sedate, or sometimes just plain old dull, cloth, (though I prefer to call them... ummm... elegant.) I think Number 8 on Page 1, a more balanced weave, is where I'm heading eventually. But I am starting with the narrow 100+EPI example first.

To make it oh-so-easy-I'm-almost-horizontal for myself, I started playing not with paint but with water color pencils last night. Just doodling, or rather, making patches of different colors, wiping the page with a wet sponge, then overlaying other colors, then wiping or not wiping. (I was working on both sides of the page on a regular/cheap sketchbook.)

I used to love simple, clear colors, but for the first time last night I liked a bit of complexity and layers. And since our living room light is not brilliant, I kept on "putting layers upon layers". Gee, how I used to hate that expression; I used to think that was one of artists' overindulgence, and hated the layers-upon-layers brown/gray/muddy look. But either my perception or taste changed, and last night layers were fun. Some pages, I clearly overworked, and I can't see the parts I originally liked, but the experience wasn't as labored as were on previous occasions.

And as long as I was doing something uncomfortable, I thought I'd dive down the really deep end, and started with complementaries. Right now I'm particularly enamored by blue-reds/yellow-reds/oranges with yellow-green with perhaps a bit of brown for accent, OR many purples with yellow-greens/yellows/oranges with a bit of pale teal. I don't think I'll put all of this on the same piece, but if I go ahead with a 8m warp, I can do at least two color schemes, so I might try both of these a go. (I see Randy holding his head in his hands, rocking back and forth, crying, "Oh, why would you stop there???" Baby steps, Maestro.)


  1. Meg, I think you have a mastery of colors that few can match. I find I am almost always drawn to certain colors, but to a fault, I tire of them easily. lately, I've been choosing more subtle colors and ones that might even be called neutrals. For example, I loved the grays in the color studies you posted the other day.

    Although at first instinct I am drawn to the pinks, oranges above. Perhaps this is a psychological reaction to the nature of the colors themselves, or a visual reaction to the colors advancing because of their warmth.

    I never know for sure, why I choose colors the way I do.

  2. That gray page was great, wasn't it? And you know why? Because I, too, love grays so I'm so familiar with them. It's as if my eyes and/or brain function in different ways when I look or work with grays, and blues and purples. Whereas the warm colors are touch and go - I remind myself of the theory and then try it timidly, and then I see it was too timid, then I overdo it. The worst part is, with colors I don't really like, sometimes I can't even tell which ones I like. They all look the same.

    I tell you it's taken a lot of lie downs in between. I've spent just as much time on my back thinking about colors as I've been up working...

  3. Thank you for the link to Kaz' web site. My gosh her stuff is gorgeous---an Australian Darwall!

  4. Yes, and pictures alone don't even begin to tell half the story! Man, the process. Her layers of work make me feel seriously lazy and disinterested in the craft!!


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