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Sunday, July 14, 2019

Columbia Gorge Hotel

During our last visit to Columbia Gorge Hotel, I took snapshots that I thought would be fun to thread sketch.  I can't believe that was four years ago and I am just now returning to those photos.  This is the first of two or three of the pictures I plan to use for  8" x 10" thread sketches.

I am still playing with watercolors, so I made my initial sketch on watercolor paper and finished it by experimenting with a watercolor splatter technique.  It was an extra step, unnecessary to complete the thread sketch, but provided a lot of entertainment! 

After taking the watercolor as far as I wanted, I followed my normal process tracing the basic lines onto clear water soluble stabilizer.  The clear stabilizer with the drawing was taped to white canvas that had been prepared with an adhesive stabilizer and a tear-away stabilizer. 

Once all the lines were stitched with black embroidery thread, I removed the water soluble stabilizer by cutting away the larger pieces and rinsing in warm water to remove the smaller bits.  I dried it flat and pressed it preserving the tear-away stabilizer on the back.  Additional stabilizer can always be added if it is damaged or too wrinkled. 

I used acrylic paint thinned with a bit of water to color some of the areas. 

The rooftops and shaded areas have more stitches than other areas increasing the risk of stretching and puckering.  For that reason, I started stitching the rooftops and shaded areas near the center of the canvas and worked outward...just as you would with a quilt.  Rather than stitching straight lines to fill in the color, I applied the thread as you would paint with a brush, that is, with swirling lines and shapes to help distinguish the different areas of the building, greenery and sky.   It takes miles of thread, but it is very therapeutic.  No rules! 

I used multiple colors in each area for depth and interest. 

After all the color is added, I finish by outlining some of the elements with black embroidery thread.  Windows, doors, detailed roof tiles, etc.  It is personal preference.  Perhaps it is the same instinct that makes me want to use ink and watercolor.
I just like the look.   

All done!  
I had fun.  I hope you enjoyed following along.  Please visit again.