|| The Companion volume
to Celtic Embroidery, Celtic Design explores color theory with text
and full-color plates, as well as explaining how to create and adapt
patterns--and presents more than a hundred additional patterns. Birds,
borders, beasts and bugs are included in the new patterns as well
as spirals and stars. There are patterns for all levels of time commitments,
from afternoon projects on up. Robert Kalthoff/Robert of Coldcastle
leads the conversation, and Gerry Hubbell/Gerald of Ipsley adds documentation
comments. Although intended for embroiderers, the patterns are equally
usable for calligraphy and illumination, woodcarving, leatherwork,
tattoos, or any art that uses line to surround fields of color. Written
by and for Living History re-creators, this is a how-to book that
show you how to use your history.
excerpt from the color theory discussion:
Colors are warm and cool. A color
cannot be properly defined as warm or cool except in its relationship
with other colors.
There are the basic raw colors,
or primary colors: red, blue and yellow. Note that this is pigment--the
colors of light are what you see in the rainbow, or red, yellow,
and green--the blue disappearing in the sky. Mixing the raw colors
will give you the secondaries, green, orange and purple. The raw
colors are the foundation for the definition of everything we see.
Back to the black and white thing
for a moment. Let us assume that black is the absence of light and
the most intense natural form of illumination we have on this planet
is a mediocre yellow sun. where direct sunlight does not hit, the
illumination is the backlight of a blue sky.
Colors are not made darker by the
addition of black, nor are they made lighter by the addition of
white, but by temperature. They are warm or cool. Please refer to
When raw color is revealed by light,
it loses some of its true identity and is conditioned by the intensity
and the temperature of the light source. If there was no light,
we would see only black.
Observe a sunset closely sometime.
The light source is the big divide. The blazing golden sun sinking
down into the dust turns into orange-red-crimson, and the overhead
sky is getting darker and more blue, revealing the crimsons as purple.
Near the horizon, the sun has turned these blues into teal and turquoise.
As the sun goes, we deal with colors turning into eights and nines.
Black soon follows.
Celtic embroidery does not participate
in those subtle shadings. There is very little blending or shading--basically,
it's flat colors laid into a pattern to create a whole.
Choosing color is rather like the
process of illumination.
First we must choose the fabric
on which we will work the embroidery. This fabric will be the canvas
upon which all your colors will be created. You need to select on
the basis of the color of the fabric, the intensity, and the temperature
of the color.
Refer to plate
X, a piece being worked by Gerald. He chose a rose/scarlet, generally
a cool red (Gerald speaking. I chose a red that could have been generated
by madder, however, it's a bluish red--that is, if a truly red object
was lit by the sun, the parts in shadow would be lit by the sky. The
hot reds would be yellowish, and the cool reds, or shadows, would