Collect Open: Design Development

S K E T C H B O O K D E V E L O P M E N T


I don’t tend to share very much of my design development stages but thought it could be interesting to take a closer look at it for this collection.


Made up of a series of tapestries based around the seasons of the sea, my starting point was photography. Over the course of a year I took photos of coastlines in a range of weather conditions, seasons and times of the day.




Once I had a (pretty huge!) collection of images to work from I began to narrow my choices down and sort them into the three different seasons; Oceanic, Upwelling and Winter Storm.


I translated these images into digital drawings and started to pick out colours which corresponded with the yarns I had dyed/spun. Once I had chosen two designs from each season to weave I was ready to start working with the yarn.


These images from my sketchbook should give you an idea of the colours and designs I decided to go with!





 

C H O O S I N G Y A R N S H A D E S

Choosing yarn shades to go with each design was much more stressful that I expected it to be. It took up to five hours to work out for each design, some were more complex than others.


Each colour in my hand drawn design had to have a corresponding yarn bundle, which was itself made up of 3-5 yarn strands. Using multiple shades for each colour block meant I could blend my designs more easily and it gave artworks a more organic, natural feel.



My “Winter Storm 1.1” design had 44 colour changes each with 4/5 threads per colour. To keep track of all the different shades I took detailed and numbered notes then made a corresponding sample shade card. I was able to refer to these notes when I needed more of any colour while weaving and they’ll be useful if I ever need to recreate a design (provided I can still understand what I wrote by then, they’re becoming more illegible by the day as the deadline approaches 😂)


 

The link to my KoFi fundraising page is https://www.ko-fi.com/arratextiles if you’d like to help me get to Collect Open 2022!

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