Friday, May 18, 2012

Kalon is Finished

Kalon, my little heart is finished. I had a great time hooking this design. I planned but not too much! I made most of my decisions as I was hooking. I love the freedom that gives me.

I dyed recycled woolens from vintage skirts, and used them in the heart. There are no new wools in it. Somehow this makes me happy. There were some plain wools, and some textures. I really like the contrast of the two. The contrast adds a lot of dimension to the work. I did not outline any of the forms as I preferred the soft transitions between background and forms. Rather I used the directional possibilities of rug hooking to create a background that would follow the forms. I lined the back with a piece of soft brown wool, and whip-stitched it snugly against the edge of the heart.

I am planing on creating a pdf of the pattern and offering it as a free pattern on this blog. I hope to have the pdf ready in a few days.

Have a great weekend, and happy hooking!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Of Rabbits and Copyright

So yesterday, as I had written, I found inspiration in my coffee cup, and drew the design for a new rug.
I posted my pictures on RughookingDaily. I went on to do some marbling, and then went back to look at people's rug on Rughooking Daily.

Rachelle had left a comment on my design. She warned me there could be a problem with copyright. I thought surely, because I was only going to use the rug at home, and had no intention to sell it, or sell the pattern, there should not be a problem. I was wrong.

I followed Rachelle's advice and did some research, and found the information I was looking for.
I think this issue is a very important one, so I will give you my understanding of the question. This is of course not intended as legal advice.

If you find inspiration in a picture out of the public domain, or any work out of the public domain, and you create a rug from it, you are in effect creating a "derivative work." The owner of the copyright is the original creator.

In order to create a rug from the original piece, you have to either ask permission from the copyright owner, or transform the intent of the work significantly in order to claim "fair use." Let's say for example that you find a picture of a red barn in the fall in New England, and you hook the picture exactly, but change the color of the barn. That is not transformative of the original message, and you would be infringing on the owner's copyright.

Now let's say, you hook that barn, but add skyscrapers instead of the trees in the background, I believe that would be transformative. The message of the original artist was about farmland. By adding the skyscrapers, you are making a commentary on the rise of the cities suffocating the idyllic farmland of the past. In this case, I believe you would not be infringing on the copyright.

Even if you have no intention of selling the design, and are only doing it for personal use,the same rules apply.

So to get back to my bunny, as I was clearly creating a derivative work, but not transforming the intent of the original artwork, I did search in vain for a way to contact the company who had made the cup. I could not find their contact information, so I will not be hooking a rug from it. It is a little sad, but I had rather do things by the book. I hope my explanation will be useful to you.

If you want to read more about it, I recommend this very clear article. I am sorry this was not a very fun post. I promise you pictures of my finished heart tomorrow!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

I See a Rabbit Looking at Me

The Kalon heart design is almost completely hooked, and this morning as I sat on the couch sipping my coffee, I started thinking about what to hook next.

My coffee cup became my inspiration.

As the words of the famous children's book resonated in my mind: "What do you see? I see a rabbit looking at me,"  I started doodling, some hearts, some flowers, and a rabbit full of mischief staring at me.

I am thinking of a circular design, but these are just thoughts at the moment. I am sure the design will evolve as I redraw it, and then as I hook it.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Wool Street Journal

Yesterday, I received my first copy of the Wool Street Journal! I had been expectantly checking the mailbox everyday, hoping it would be there, and yesterday it was.

This publication is like no other. I love the fact that it is printed in the US.  From the soft cream colored pages, to the fonts chosen for the articles, and the lovely decorative touches on each page, it is a delight. Reading the articles, is like visiting with old friends.  When reading you feel that you are part of a warm loving community.

I enjoyed the variety of topics covered, from personal accounts about rug hooking, to dyeing, to wool applique and needlepunch. The patterns and the technique descriptions were inspiring.  I was delighted by the story behind the cover rug, the Bicycle. I found the individual experiences and stories to be inspiring.

I can hardly wait for my next issue to come!


Monday, May 14, 2012

What's in a Heart

When I started designing Kalon, I was inspired by a type of embroidery from Brittany, a region of France, called Glazig.

Then, as is always the case, as I started to draw, the design evolved and adapted to rug hooking. I placed flowers, branches, a heart within the heart. As I was designing I considered balance and movement. However, I did not realize that there was a more subtle reason for my choices. One so deep I was not even aware of it, until on Friday evening, when I stepped away from my hooking to look at the heart, it dawned on me.

I placed five flowers within my heart, one for each of my children.  The three flowers buds on the right, under the protective branches represent three of my children: my two teen boys, as close to each other in the heart as they are in real life, and then slightly to the side,  my 10 year old daughter.

On the left is a single blue flower bud, under a protective branch. This is my 8 month old baby boy.

In the top left corner of the heart, the bud has transformed into a glorious blossoming flower. That is my oldest daughter, who has left the protective branches, but is still within my heart, and will in a few weeks give birth to her first child.

I knew this heart was special to me. I put all my love in it.