Thursday, July 12, 2012

Catching the Sun

For weeks I knew EXACTLY what I was going to do for my Mythology piece. I was inspired by the rainbow serpent of aboriginal mythology and had all my fabrics and concept design mapped out. However, when it came time to actually make my quilt, I ended up returning to my New Zealand roots.

The desire for more hours in the day, it seems, is not a peculiarly 21st century phenomena. Maui, the hero of Maori/Polynesian mythology, was asked by his mother to slow down the sun so more work could be done in the light. Maui and his brothers made a flax net to snare the sun. They dragged the sun into a pit and Maui clubbed the sun into submission with the magic jawbone from his ancestress.

My work shows the stage of the netting of the sun. I have cross-stitched the yellow section in hand-dyed variegated threads (some I dyed myself but there's also thread from Dyed and Gone to Heaven). The stitching is quite, ahem, "organic" but it does add visual interest and nets rarely stretch evenly (that's my story anyway).

I had good intentions of finishing off the hand stitching while away on a teaching assignment but that didn't happen and I have returned home to recuperate. I'll post an updated photo when I finish the stitching, and decide which orientation I prefer.

10 comments:

Gerrie said...

I love the wonky hand stitching with the variegated thread!!

Françoise said...

Beautiful!
And I can't decide which orientation works best. Both are great.

Deborah Boschert said...

Just keep going. Take your time. Enjoy the hand stitching... I think that's the best part of hand embroidery -- it's slow and meditative and the shapes and lines emerge gently.

Love the subtle variations in color in both fabrics. Such beautiful hand dyes!

Nikki said...

The hand stitching is wonderful. The organic nature is perfect! Enjoy the process.

Kristin L said...

I think the hand stitching is the best part too! I got the net reference right away!

Diane Perin Hock said...

Brenda, I'm glad you were well enough to show us your sun piece. I love the myth (didn't know it!) and I like how you've incorporated your trademark lines in this piece. The net stitching looks gorgeous and I'll look forward to seeing how it is finished. Hope you feel better!

PAMELA said...

Beautiful work Brenda. Love both, with the sun reaching out to make the day longer (for you).

Terri Stegmiller said...

The orientation could certainly go either way as it looks wonderful both directions. I love that the stitching is very organic and it really makes for some great visual texture. Love these colors together.

Karen Rips said...

I think this will be wonderful, Brenda, the colors are so vibrant

Helen said...

Hi Brenda
Lovely piece. Maui needs to come back and slow the sun down a bit more. I could do with a few more hours in the day!