Tuesday, August 19, 2008


I sometimes find that I am obsessed with textures and colors that I see in the world. I love the variations of color in simple things, and the way things feel. The grain of a piece of wood, the structure of bark, the coarse surface of a boulder. When I see something that appears to have an interesting texture I have to touch it. When I shop for clothes, I shop more by the feel of the material than the style of the outfit. Today I took a few photographs of things around our home that had interesting textures. I could also have taken pictures of garden flowers, and vegetables. We are all familiar with a smooth ripe tomato, a fuzzy peach or a bumpy ear of corn. And of course the corn silk!!!

Smooth, bumpy, soft, sharp, dry, spiny, rough, flat, knobby, weathered, furry, sticky, coarse, grainy, slimy, wet and so many other words can describe the textures that we encounter. One of the activities we do with the children is to play with cornstarch. Take a cup of cornstarch and add a cup of water...then run your fingers through it. Try to pick up the cornstarch. It can feel dry and wet at the same time, both liquid and solid.

Perhaps that is why I love working with wool. There are butter soft wools, and scratchy wools. Fluffy wools such as angora and mohair. Each wool has a different feel. I believe that other fiber artists also appreciate the "feel" of the fiber in their hands. The lanolin content of the wool will change it's structure so that it feels different. I have noticed that there are wool "snobs" who will only work with particular wools that have a feel they enjoy working with. Perhaps that is my future?

Music has texture too. Ever notice how smooth some music can sound, or loud, or coarse or soft?

My love of texture can also apply to my friendships with people. after all, texture is about the essence of something...the character that it has. My closest friends are quite different from each other and all have textures within their lives that compliment me. Their texture might be rough or smooth, and relationships might be bumpy or fluid. I just love the character and texture of the things we encounter each day whether it be an object, music, food or a good friend.


WoolenSails said...

I think as artists, we tend to see the world in a different way. I tend to look for patterns in the world. I see shapes in trees and clouds and when we go for drives, I study the patterns of the stone walls and trees. Hopefully these visions come out in some of my art;)


JoJo said...

I'm still waiting for my inner artist to come out. I'm working on trying to slow down and pay attention to all that's around me. I envy you since you can look at things and see this kind of texture, etc. Right now, that's still all beyond me.

Miz T. said...

Jo...we all have something that catches our eye. It might be a texture, or a sparkle of light, or a pattern. I think we all need to slow down and look around us. And Debbie, I see patterns too and often want to re-create them. That's why I often carry my camera with me. I have more cloud and sky pictures than you can imagine!!! And I love stone walls...especially mossy ones! We are luck to have our own wall of boulders. Your visions of patterns DO come out in your beautiful art!!!