I initially conceived this piece for the EGA ICC Class “Design for Needlework”, taught by India Hayford. Subsequent revisions led to this version where the painted background was submitted for the EGA GCC Class “Mark and Paint on Canvas and Fabric” by Laura Smith.
The background was hand painted linen, using acrylic paint. I stitched tiny stars in the sky with silver metallic thread, to provide the scale for the landscape, and to reinforce the transparency of the light. The most challenging to represent were the light rays. In places I used a half strand of Japanese flat silk thread in lavender and gold, blended with several strands of invisible thread. In other places I used invisible thread only, or a half strand of Japanese flat gold only.
To represent the mirror smoothness of the water, I painted brilliant yellow reflections on organza, and tacked it in place before I stitched Japanese flat silk on top. The delicate sheen of the golden light is subtly reflected in the water. The hills were stitched in black, fading to charcoal grey, to emphasize the stark contrast with the light and reflection. The foreground knoll was painted a dark olive green, and overlaid with two layers of black silk gauze, stitched using invisible thread. The two layers of gauze were offset to give a sense of perspective.