Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Dark and Stormy Night
There is one project on my WIP list that I have yet to blog about: Dark and Stormy Night (Storm at Sea). Despite the fact that I usually find naming quilts an arduous process, this one came unbidden. Probably because Snoopy in Peanuts started all of his creative writing endeavors with, "It was a dark and stormy night..." This always gave me a giggle (yeah, I know, I'm easily entertained). However, it seems perfect for this quilt.
The picture above is courtesy of my EQ5 program. I have not proceeded very far with the project. I'm still cutting the pieces. While the project will be color controlled in that all the blue pieces will be some shade of blue, the green pieces some shade of green, etc., each of the 64 blocks will be unique. No fabric repeats. That probably sounds crazy to a lot of quilters, but for me, it's fun. I'm still collecting fabrics for the purple and green pieces. The blue pieces are all cut.
My favorite colors are blue, purple, and green. Yet as a rule, I tend to pair them with at least one warm color. It always seemed to me that cool colors tend to need warm colors and visa-versa. Art theory tends to confirm this. My art background is very minimal, being limited to one art education class back when I thought I was going to become a teacher. The teacher spent a lot of time teaching us about the color wheel. Complimentary colors: those straight across the wheel from each other. Analogous colors: those right next to each other. Apparently, there are defined ways of putting colors together in order to create an attractive combination.
Then she told us about the painting "Blue Boy" by Thomas Gainsborough.
Apparently Gainsborough broke the color theory rules when he created this painting. The theory is that warm colors give the feeling of moving toward the viewer, while cool colors--like blue--give the feeling of receding from the viewer. Gainsborough proved this didn't necessarily have to be the case, because Blue Boy feels fully front and center in this painting. Of course, if there are any warm colors to be found in this painting they are very muted.
I have no idea why this particular thing of the many things that art education teacher taught us stuck in my head, but it did. So my Storm at Sea is my own attempt to make cool colors come forward. I'm doing it by making the background totally black. A cheat compared to Gainsborough's beautiful painting. Nevertheless, there you have it.