I had jumped ahead of myself a bit and already played with a wide range of materials and techniques in my first woven sample, so for this piece I worked from a number of my photographs and sketches to use what I had learned to convey the feeling of each image. I used a heddle which made the weaving process a little quicker and helped to keep the width of the tapestry regular, although the warping process was tricky. The warp needed to be wound in smaller sections meaning that I had to take care to keep the tension even as I went rather than being able to adjust it all at the end.
In this first sample I used a picture of a bouquet of local meadow flowers. As well as the image itself, I wanted to convey the feeling of a meadow. The background was made up of woven and knotted coarser textured wools, frayed fabrics and netting with frayed bright blue silk and white yarn/yellow netting to convey the flowers. I wanted the flowers to be slightly obscured by the green and have quite a deep pile.
The next section was based on a sketch of the sea on a slightly rough windy day. I used eccentric wefts to add movement, and contrasting sections both in texture and tone to break up the image. In the paler areas I used the soumak style chain stitch weave in alternating directions to echo the waves in the rest of the piece.
This is a photograph of a wet textured wall on Portland. I used a combination of frayed silks, gold tissue paper, metallic ribbons, glossy braiding cord, plastic netting and various other textured neutral yarns. I put a section of Soumak weaving with the glossy braiding cord to portray the wet bumps on the wall which worked very well and provides a focal point.
The final idea was based on some rusted metal ropes on a crane on the cliff. I built the weavings in diagonal sections outines by 2 picks of a black sock yarn. I worked two layers of ‘rope’ in this way, with some areas more solid in colour and texture than others. Although the weaving ended up looking quite different to the source material, I was pleased with the way it turned out as a stand-alone piece.
For the larger section I chose to develop the meadow piece, widening the combinations of yarns used in a single Ghiordes knot, and using two different approaches to portray the blue flowers. The piece isn’t hugely different to the first section, but I feel it could work well on a larger scale with quieter areas incorpoated into the design.
In summary, I am happy that I used my experiences in the initial experimental woven sample to work directly from source materials and develop ideas.