Way back in December, I mentioned that I was going to be participating in an Illustration Stitch Along (SAL). We’re currently working on Edward Gorey pieces (with plans to do other illustrators, like Tim Burton, in the future). One participant has already finished their piece (and it’s gorgeous), but the rest of us are still working on our pieces or still trying to decide what illustration to use (we have three months, so there’s still time).
I was a bit slow to get started because I was trying to find a bigger copy of the illustration I picked. Alas, there just aren’t enough Gorey fans in Edmonton for the library to have all of his books and the book I first found a small version of the illustration (Ascending Peculiarity: Edward Gorey on Edward Groey, ed. Karen Wilkin) didn’t bother to note where each image had come from. The illustration I picked is of two children at the beach with the words “I can hardly wait for the fall season, can you?” on one side (I believe this refers to the fall season of ballet). Thanks to Google Books, I believe that it’s from Gorey’s book “Amphigorey Too”, but I haven’t confirmed this.
I was drawn to the illustration because it’s on a beach (big surprise!). And, it didn’t look like it would be too hard, which is nice because I haven’t done many bigger pieces of embroidery. I found some lovely sandy coloured cross-hatch patterned fabric and knew right away that I wanted to use a dark brown thread, but I wanted to add a bit of colour to make it my own. I eventually decided on a palette of brown, green, blue and purple. The green will be for the seaweed, the blue for the water, and the purple for the sea star. Everything else will be brown. Of course, I didn’t have the right colours in proper embroidery floss, so I just decided to use some Gutterman (regular sewing) thread I have. I like how thin and precise the stitches are, but I have to admit that it’s a bit of a pain in the butt to use. It keeps getting tangled, and sometimes I don’t notice when it happens on the back, so I end of having to weave the errant loops into the stitched lines. It’s time consuming and annoying, so I won’t be using non-embroidery thread again, if I can help it.
Here are some pictures of it’s progress so far:
I’ve made a little more progress on the piece (the boy, as well as the outline and shading of the surfboard) and I’m ready to start working on some of the coloured bits. I still haven’t decided whether or not I will use colour for the stripes on the surfboard, so I will leave that until the end.