Here's what's happening with those leftover letter forms that I decided to experiment with layering over each other and hand stitching. I'm trying a new-for-me method of stretching cloth on stretcher bars before stitching. It is a wee bit awkward sometimes but definitely an improvement over a hoop. It would work great if I could mount it on a stand and keep both hands free all the time. For now, one or both knees are tackling that job.
Since I seem to be becoming Jeanne of the-thousand-and-one analogies, here is today's (an homage to spring?!). I feel like soil that some kindly, generous gardener is tilling and seeding. It seems that every day new shoots emerge in the shape of new ideas to consider and cultivate. I am excited about seeing the Klee drawings and am sure they are seeds that will eventually start to sprout and make their way to the surface.
Question that remains with this first study is how to stitch the fused, layered letter forms. I could machine stitch the outlines and use that to secure the cloth to the backing before I mount it on the stretched canvas frame. I could hand stitch into the outlines of the letter forms with hatching stitches and do no machine stitching at all on this surface.
Last night I impulsively pulled out a copy of Paul Klee: Painting Music before heading off to bed to read for a bit, digested a few pages and then thumbed through it to look at the images. Suddenly, voila -- a drawing appeared that seemed incredibly similar to my letter forms and hand stitching and the hatch marks excitingly suited to hand or freemotion machine stitching.
Polyphonic (And a Complementary Repeat), 1931, pen and blue ink on two pieces of scratch paper, mounted on cardboard. Klee wrote about his polyphonic pieces (the term is used to describe music containing parts of equal significance which are played simultaneously -- a lot to think about in applying this to visual art!) in notes for his Bauhaus lectures: "the layering of various structured areas produces of composition of 'many voices', a harmony of forms in which colour takes on a specific meaning." (Paul Klee: Painting Music by Hajo Duchting, Prestel Verlag, 2002.)