Each one of my pieces is a unique handmade item, designed and stitched at my home and studio in Salem, Oregon. Embroidery is a slow art, but good things take time. These are the steps that go into making a finished piece.
The process usually begins with one species--a bird I've seen for the first time on a hike, or a plant that I greet every morning outside my door, or an insect that catches my eye. I find out as much as I can about that species: Where does it live? What other species does it rely on? How does it defend itself? How has it changed the landscape of our wilds? Is there anything I can learn from its behaviors?
Back in my studio, I start to draw. I use my own photos as references, or sometimes text books and field guides, and when possible, I draw from life. I typically draw directly onto my iPad with an Apple Pencil.
After my pattern is printed out and sized, I transfer it onto fabric using a light table and a water soluble transfer pen. I plan out a color palette, using again my iPad and a DMC color card. I study the texture of the subject and decide which stitches to use to reproduce the same effect. This is my favorite stage of the process.
With a plan and a drawing, I settle in for a long haul. Depending on the size and level of detail, a piece can take anywhere from an hour of stitching to 36 hours. The repetitive motions have a meditative quality, and seeing an image slowly come into being is so rewarding.
Once a piece is finished, I wash it to remove any pattern markings and back it with high quality blended wool felt. Each piece is finished with a WILDWOOD leather tag.