Sometimes in the middle of something I am not confident of, I have to stop and do something I know I understand completely, to reassure myself of my hard won skills.
Alternatively, sometimes in the middle of working on one thing, the urgency to do a different thing becomes overwhelming and I have to drop the first thing and do the new thing now, and then go back to the old thing.
The above piece was a breather in the middle of the elaborate saltmarsh and beach piece I'm working on. I finished most of the salt marsh yesterday. I was delighted to find I had exactly the color of perle cotton I wanted, and I used that in the bobbin, and ran a green and brown variegated thread through the needle; the end result looks amazing. But then I desperately needed some pink and yellow and blue-green in my life, so I finished this piece early this morning and now I shall go back and think about the next part of the salt marsh puzzle.
Meet Iris – finished but nekkid! I think she might need some clothes, but Alice says dragon girls are fine Just the Way they ARE. Thank you.
The pattern was wonderful fun. She is knit entorely in the round, and each piece begins by picking up stitches from existing pieces. I thought it was going to be crazy-making, but instead I had a wonderful time, and was SO relieved at the end when I didn't have to sew anything together. I did get kind of carried away with her lower legs and ankles – I added some shaping the designer didn't have, but I have a major thing for a shapely calf, and it came out well enough.
The last thing that surprised me is how solid the knit fabric is. I was using tiny needles for largish yarn, so it makes intellectual sense, but to be able to stuff her fairly firmly and not have the stuffing show through the knitted fabric was lovely. I have lots of experience stuffing muslin bodies and faces, and they take a phenomenal amount sutffing; just when you think they might be finished, you are only half-way done, and the same amount again of stuffing goes into them and smoothes out the lumpiness. Iris is not stuffed to that standard, but she did absorb more stuffing than I anticipated, and is much sturdier because of it.
So. That was fun. Back to the landscapes!
Of course, much of what I like best about the original idea I had was the focus on details of how water carved channels through the marsh and offshore. And that is the part that is the most difficult to convey. Which is just how life goes, yes? Yes.
My mother lives where she can look out over the salt marshes. When I go and visit her, I go to the beach, because it is the best beach, and because I have a pass for it.
I have a pass so that I can go and be inspired by various Trustees of Reservations properties, so that I can make artwork for the Crane Estate Art Show and Sale that usually happens on an early weekend in November. (You should totally go – there are so many beautiful things, and admission is free when it isn't the opening.)
While that pass is getting a workout this year, this particular piece is drawing more from Google Earth than from the photographs and sketches I make when I'm there.
This is the first layer, the deepest channels.