Big Leaf Maple - March BJP

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

For my March project I chose Big Leaf Maple (Acer macrophylum) which begins to leaf out at the beginning of the month. I'm always a bit anxious around Spring because this is when it starts to get unpleasantly warm (for me that's over 70F!) and I know that soon it will be Summer and the rain will stop. But Spring is really a special time of year in this area - the Winter-dormant plants are all starting to leaf out and grow, the Summer-dormant plants are still actively growing, and the wildflowers begin their incredible flower display. It's one big swirling explosion of green and flowers!

So I went out to a local hillside where I found my maple leaf beginning to unfurl. It was a translucent green tinged with a coppery color - I used these colors in my outline. The circle in the middle that is half yellow and half white is representational of the Vernal Equinox - half of the Moon and half of the Sun for the balancing of day and night. To create this I strung the beads and sewed them down into a spiral shape.

While walking on the trail looking for my maple leaves I came across trillium (Trillium chloropetalum) and gooseberry (Ribes menziesii) blooming in the woods! The trillium is an incredible woodland bloomer on a stalk about 18" high with three huge leaves topped with three sepals and three petals. I stitched these on the left of the leaf. I just included the sepals and the petals, which can be white, maroon, or rose-pink. These are depicted as you would see them looking straight down at the flower. The gooseberry is a thorny shrub and the flowers hang down from the branches like little fuchsias. The gooseberry flower is on the right-hand side - the flowers are smaller than the size I stitched them. I used different bead shapes and thread for this one and I think it looks pretty realistic. I was actually a bit surprised by how realistic it turned out! So there's my project - inspired by a Springtime woodland!

Note: This entry says posted by robin michelle but it's Jill's March project. I just posted for her because she was having computer problems. 

February BJP Finished!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I finally finished February! It took awhile and I'm not entirely sure what it means but here it is. Since each month is supposed to be a journal of what's going on in my life that month I was waiting until about half-way through the month to start. I put the rose cameo on Feb 13th and then worked a little around it on the 14th. On the 15th a close friend of mine died. I stopped working on it after that and didn't start again until the 1st week of March. There are a lot of tears on this because I thought about him every time I picked it up to work on. My original thought when I had started February was a kind of nebulous idea of something along the lines of "looking for love in all the wrong places" as a satiric homage to Valentine's Day and some not so great choices I had made. Once I started working on this again and thought about it, I realized in a way it still fit. My friend Paul was one of the right places I looked for love. He was one of my closest friends and always there to listen to me gripe & complain. He loved my bead stuff too. I have some pretty heart beads he had sent me after he moved and I wanted to include one on this but when I finished it just didn't seem to fit so I'll save it for another project. I halfway wanted to do this all in dark beads to reflect how I felt but I could imagine him coming back to haunt me for being morbid and weepy! He was a happy person and laughed a lot and that's how I want to remember him and I do when I look at this. I mostly did wavy lines - through no plan, it just came out that way. Maybe because I've felt not so stable this past month. But it's done and I'm fairly pleased with it!
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