too much snow...

Snow dyeing seems to be the current rage, at least among certain online circles. I was ahead of the curve, trying it last winter, dabbling a little this year. But I'm kind of over it.

And I've been trying to figure out why. My current thinking is that while I like the results, the pieces of cloth that result are fairly complete in and of themselves--I'm not always sure how I can improve them. Stitch them, sure. Cut them up and sew them back together, not so easy.

And there's the fact that much of what happens in the snow dyeing process to produce such attractive cloth is an accident. A happy one, to be sure, but out of the artist's control. Her hand is in it with the color choices and fabric arrangement, but it's mostly happenstance.

Watercolorists take advantage of these happy accidents gladly. I embrace them when I can. But to have the main focus of a piece be the result of serendipity, I just. Can't. Go. There.

So even though there's plenty of snow to be had out my back door, I'm leaving it be this year. I still have hopes of using the pieces I've already made, and the technique is one I'll keep in my repository of techniques. Just not now.


JoAnn Deck said...

"Sometimes I think I'm an artist in search of a medium." You wrote this on your BLOG quite awhile ago, I just found it tonight, I love it, it so resonates with where I am right now also. I think it's a good thing, we are curious creatures and see the world differently from day to day, sometimes even hour to hour. I can't tell the world what I see in only one medium, and everything I do and learn is filling the well for the next great story to be told, and so it is with you.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Oh, I know just what you mean. My example is, toss a bunch of sticks on a table and if they fall in an interesting composition, can I take credit for that? Is the fact that my eye can discern that it is a pleasing design enough? I'm not sure it is.

What I like to do with the type of cloth you are talking about is tease out images that I see there with thread so that they are more obvious - perhaps the viewer never would have noticed them otherwise. But again, this goes just so far and I need to express myself in other ways, and more directly.

Of course, the other use for cloth such as this is as background for applique. I have a friend who has really mastered interpreting nature from her photos, and often the thing that sets her main attraction apart from other artists' interpretations is the exciting background fabric she pairs with her subjects.