I decided to trace all the portrait embroideries and the figures pulling on the rope onto velum, (the front layer of lace having already been completed), which although not transparent like the organza, the proposed final fabric, does give some idea of how the final piece might look.
These panels have been hanging in my summerhouse/studio for several weeks, and I think I am now happy that the concept will work. I like the natural light playing on these sheets and I now need to find out how the effect will look on organza, as it will be very different.
There are still some technical details to sort out with the digital embroidery, but hopefully these will be resolved fairly easily.
During this break from the project I have continued with my skeletal/muscle studies and am finding the challenge irresistible, there is considerable satisfaction in achieving a close copy of the poses in the book that I'm working from, Practical Anatomy for Artists Peter M Simpson. I have also started to use his methods in a several studies of the work of different sculptors, plus some life modelling.
A sketch of a sculpture at Petworth House
A whole skeleton studied at Haslemere Museum
Although this body of work has little direct connection to the project, I do feel that without the direction that it has taken I would not have been lead down this path, so as long as I have the luxury of time I am happy to pursue it for as long as it pleases me to do so. It could easily develop into a new direction as I find the shapes of the muscles and the bones often quite beautiful.
There is a comforting rhythm in the shapes and the connection they make with each other in order to form the whole.