Goldilocks source images
Oh. There are so many gorgeous and detailed images of the sun coming in that show the sun with a shaggy texture. I'm having flashbacks of goldenrod shag carpets from my childhood. I realize that this isn't the actual appearance and color of the sun due to filters...but I'm the artist and I'm running with it.
I am in the middle of a large study in which I am working out how best to capture shagadelic luminosity. I also did a small study with mistakenly purchased silver-lined beads where I experimented with expanding the hexagon weave as large as I could before losing control of it. (Note to self--four strands of embroidery floss when weaving with only glass 6/0 beads; three strands are too loose and floppy). The small study is on a large glass charger. It is a birthday present.
The larger 3-d study is on a 26" full-dome security mirror. I tried baby bear with mama bear tiles and spaced the tiles out more so that I could do more of a negative space treatment. I'm not very pleased with the mama bear tiles because the design gets more angular when beyond the first row. The surface of the sun doesn't have angles. I'm want the geometric negative space, but not in the beadwork which is too obvious.
I wanted to incorporate second-hand beads into the project. A lot of people are selling off extra 11 or 10/0 yellow beads. So I have a bunch of those and I'm going to start adding those in the next couple of days. I started doing this with the smaller beads on Honeymoon and I loved it. My only concern is that by placing the beads hole side up I won't get the shaggy texture I want. Then I will have to switch over to placing them in whole rows from the needle. The downside of that is that the design will be more opaque with less mirror shining through and I will use more beads.
I might try weaving the mama bears with only six reflective beads in the center. Then placing reflective beads in an arc through some of the woven voids and then continuing that line into the negative space to join it up with one from another tile. Yep. Blogging is magic.
Oo. I just looked at a mama bear and traced it out with my finger. It will work! That's how I'm going to do the next piece. The 36" full dome bought surplus is here. It came in a very battered box that was barely taped shut, but it's fine for my purposes.
Design note: I used a variety of thread colors and I really like the school bus yellow/orange. It gives the design more depth somewhat like the image below with the orange base color with yellow highlights. The thread color does a lot of visual heavy lifting in that it makes the piece more variegated, painterly, deep and less boring.
Color-wise I keep going back and forth. I think I want to make a yellow/white sun with a mix of white and yellow reflective beads and then I see these gorgeous solar astronomy images and I revert back to all yellow.
Above is one of Andrew McCarthy's solar astrophotographs. He's on Twitter and Instagram as @CosmicBackground. He has takes astro photos from his back yard in California. He sells his images as printed or digital merch.
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Julie Mars' current events, projects, & inspirations.