In the above photo, the glow is caused by the sun rising behind an “ice cube”–a large fragment of a glacier washing up on the black sand beach. In fabric, we don’t have the sun shining through our work, but we can still create glowing effects. This is one of the photos I took while traveling in Iceland this fall. This experience led to an idea for a new workshop, titled Chromaticity: Flat and Glowing, which will be offered at Nancy Crow’s Timber Frame Barn in October 2017. In this workshop we will be delving into the relationship between color and light. As David Hornung says in his text Colour,
“The relationship between color and light is one of the most powerful aspects of two-dimensional art. Light itself has a mysterious psychological effect. To see light appear to emanate from within a group of colors is an arresting visual experience.”
“An arresting visual experience” certainly describes my trip! My husband and I signed on for a photography workshop to see the colors of fall–including, of course the aurora borealis. Though we have been in Iceland before at midsummer, this time we were there at the peak of fall color. How can a country with very few trees have fall color, you ask?
Everywhere there is lichen and moss and shallow-rooted bushes that need little soil, clinging to the porous rock of the lava beds.
In each photo, it is easy to see the glowing color–but consider how crucial the flat color is to the effect. This is the central idea of the workshop. As artists in cloth, we want to translate these ideas to fabric, creating cloth that can convey pure, glowing color, that appears luminous when used, and creating partnered hues that are less glowing, less luminous, ready to be used as contrast in compositions.
I am curious. Is having both flat and glowing color in your palette of cloth something you consider when designing? I would love to see any links you may have to artwork that uses this aspect of color to advantage. I immediately think of some of the Amish quilts from the Esprit collection. What comes to mind?