Friday, June 29, 2012

WIP Report - Surf & Turf Diamond Shawl

Even though I was not blogging last year, I was working on lots of new designs; spinning, weaving, crocheting and knitting with abandon. Throwing myself into fiber has always been my way of coping with life's conundrums. During my life sans blog, I also spent an enormous amount of time living out of a suitcase. Therefore, my creative regimen adapted to a life of anonymity on the road. Honestly, the last year of making while traveling was very freeing. I made what I wanted when I wanted and I didn't care if anyone saw (or commented) about anything I was working on. In addition, I also taught myself to scale down my work into manageable components that could travel easily. As a result, I began to work much more with motifs, piecework if you will, components of larger pieces than I ever had before. After all, small stuff is easy to throw into a carry on and work on while sitting in a seat in coach or the passenger seat of our xTerra.

As an example of this new way of working, I sought to scale down a work that has become commonplace in my pantheon of projects: the diamond shawl. Already technically weaving on a small scale via my lap looms, I intended to further reduce the scale of my woven modules for I loved the idea of throwing the pieces into a quart size plastic bag and working on them without covering my entire lap. As such, I ratcheted my working loom size downward from the 14", 12" and 7" diamond looms I usually worked with to a 3.5" loom. In addition to a smaller sizing, I sought direct inspiration from my ubiquitous travels. You see, I used to work conceptually rather than gathering direct inspiration. My older work was really derivative of words and complicated formulations of ideas. The last year or so, I've attempted to simply my creative process by working directly from a landscape, an image, a color, a feeling. In short, I am trying not to overthink the process. I just want to jump in and do.

So, I figured I share a WIP with you that is a direct result of these creative transformations: The Surf & Turf Diamond Shawl.

The diamonds are small and the colorway is a reflection of landscapes I've been basking in for the last year. For example, the blues, blue-greens of the ocean and sky set against the greens and browns of the earth on Santa Cruz Island (Channel Islands National Park).

The blue of the sky and the sand of Kelso Dunes at Mojave National Preserve.

And finally, a landscape framed by metal aged in the salt air on Alcatraz Island.

Can't wait to show you all this FO upon completion (hopefully this weekend)!

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