Working so much that the desire to make cloth has slipped away from me for the time being. I'm too exhausted to think creatively in that direction.
Sunday morning offered a little time off and the chance to make a short voyage with Nilo and a couple of friends to the other side of the Golfo Dulce by lancha.
We got lucky! On the outward trip we saw many manta rays, jumping into the air and swimming gracefully at the surface of the water. Fascinating! On the return journey, a group of dolphins right beside the boat.
Nilo: self portrait.
I need to remember, sometimes, it's important to do nothing.
For over a year now, I've had this idea about layers. About a base cloth with a layer that is a repeat pattern - or fragments of one - stitched over top, or made in a reverse applique fashion. And for some reason, this idea has stuck. And for some reason, in my mind, the form of this layer is like a scrolling flourish and also somewhere between a kind of baroque pattern and a middle eastern tile-styled pattern. And I can't see the exact design yet (unless it's going to develop from one of those shown in the image below). But the idea stays with me.
Sketch book scraps.
And for some reason, I have a feeling that it needs to be constructed with a very thin cloth, because it also needs to be light and floaty.
And I'm sat here looking at all of my recent indigo dye results (note that there are more today) and wondering if this is it. Because these are long, narrow, strips of muslin that would make great scarves, or at least, a great scarf.
My layer on the top of these indigo patterns could be in white, subtle as a ghost. Or in black, which would probably make a pretty bold design statement. Or, perhaps it would be more interesting to use one of these as the base cloth and another one as the top layer, so you hardly even noticed at first. And maybe I could do kantha stitch only over the layered part?... Now that idea has me thinking about ways to add texture to what would be for all intensive purposes a virtually invisible pattern!
Now there's an idea!
Not that I have any time to embark on such an extravagant journey of exploration! Because, lord knows, the kind of thing I have in mind, would be intricate and probably require months and months to piece together, and just as long to stitch!
The last time I was here at the farm, I decided to try my hand with indigo again. The first time I tried this - almost a year ago to the day - wasn't very successful. The cloth turned blue, a pale forget-me-not blue. It was pretty. But not what I'd hoped for.
I only have a few ounces of indigo powder, so my vat is limited. A glass specimen jar. With not even enough dye to sufficiently cover the small pieces of cloth that I'm adding. And I know that's not how it's supposed to be done. Particularly with indigo. But there.
This time, I added a secret ingredient ;) I prepared a couple of pieces of seconded muslin and popped them in. Then I went away for 3 weeks. And here are the results.
I really like the one on the right.
Now I know that I can get indigo to do something for me at least, I'm going to try and improve my techniques. But first of all, I will have to find a way to get more indigo powder and enough muslin to keep at with!
For the past month, along the country roads, various tree species - particularly those more commonly associated with dry forest areas - have been bursting into flower and the air is filled with sweetness. Now I have to photograph the Jacarandas!
It was a curious feeling to be standing not 100 meters from the coastline on Friday, not knowing if the latest news reports were infact acurrate, or whether we really would be engulfed by the ocean at around 4:43pm.
Mid-morning, I heard that a whale had appeared in the Gulf just infront of the town. A good sign?... A bad sign?... I figure these creatures must know something.
Reinaldo and Nilo left town early and headed back to the farm for the weekend and for higher ground. Meantime, I kept my crews moving... transplanting trees on the beach... wondering!
As it turned out, there was no noticeable change to the sea levels here.
My thoughts go out to those who have been affected by the tragic course of events.