This is a commission I recently undertook, which was created and given as a wedding present.
The client originally wanted a picture of the couple's miniature schnauzer with some highland cattle. Unfortunately I was not able to come up with a suitably naturalistic image, as the size of the two types of animal is quite disparate and I thought that the resulting image would appear too contrived, Because I work with tweed and wool yarns, the images I create are never going to be highly representational. But despite this limitation, in most cases I still like to create images that are reasonably natural and realistic. Fortunately the client was happy to compromise and requested a picture of highland cattle and Pollok House in Glasgow, which is where the couple were married. I also needle felted the couples names and the date of their marriage into the foliage at the foreground of the picture.
Commissions are always challenging because where possible I obviously want to give the client exactly what they want. Sometimes I have to send the client sketches and photos to make sure that I understand the image they see in their mind's eye. I also like to send my clients regular pictures of their commission as it progresses, so there are no unexpected surprises..
I really enjoyed doing this commission as there is something special about watching a building gradually emerge as I apply each layer of tweed. First the walls and chimneys, then the roof, then the windows and finally applying the yarns to represent the window frames and fine details of the house.
I also had a lot of fun using a tartan tweed for the cattle and really enjoyed altering the direction of the tartan pattern to try and emphasise the shape of each cow.
I am a Northumberland based textile artist and I create needle felted paintings with Harris Tweed and wool yarns.