Sunday, August 05, 2007

Change

This is how I feel. Tangled up, ends all over the place, sort of a plan but all up for grabs at the next moment. Must my knitting mirror my interior state? But that's me, right now. New store, new people, new place, new commute. I woke up this morning, drank a cup of coffee, tried to concentrate on the New York Times Arts and Leisure section of the Sunday paper, sat for a few minutes trying to meditate. Then I gave up and allowed myself to obsess about the Mitered Square Blanket. This is what I do when I feel stress: I try to wrestle a problem to the ground with my mind. And I organize, which usually translates as throwing stuff out. There's nothing as restorative as filling a big garbage bag with stuff that you no longer use.
This morning, I settled for dumping all the Tahki Cotton Classic yarn that I've been piling into a big wooden bowl onto the living room floor so that I could separate it into piles by color.
It was a mess. Lots of skeins heaped into a pile. Some wound into balls, some still in wrappers. My needle constantly hidden under the mess. A stew of color before. Now I could see what I had and how much of each color I have left.





Next, and this all went much faster than the time it is taking me to download the pictures and describe the process, I photographed my three favorite squares. I'm only going to show one of them, because I'd hate to see Blogger crash from the number of photos I'm stuffing into this post. This is the blue-green/red-violet square. I think that it's the first one that I made, and still one of the best.
I can call it blue-green and red-violet because my Staedtler color wheel from Office Depot (around two dollars and fifty cents, thank you very much) tells me so. And using my color wheel, I now came to the intellect-dominating-the-problem part of the exercise, as I tried to figure out what the relationship of these colors is.
Here's what I discovered: my favorite squares are the ones that use colors based on a triadic relationship. What that means in plain language, still using the square above as the example, is this: Imagine a triangle. At the top point is that strong blue-green that you see in the square. At the lower right hand corner is red-violet (we'll come back to that in a moment). At the bottom left corner is yellow-orange. What I've done in this square is to pit one point of the triad (or three-part relationship) against another point. Or, to be honest, I've fudged a bit, because this square really contrasts blue-green with violet (a deep purple) instead of red-violet (a pinkish purple). But close enough, and the rule seemed to hold for the other two squares that I studied. Oh, what the hell. Here's another example. If the stock market and world media crash at 9:27 a.m., it is only due to too many knitting pictures on one poor slob's blog.
Here we have a square with a predominantly yellow-blue triadic relationship. The neon yellow is the top point of the triangle, the bright blue is the lower right hand corner, and the absent third point would be red. In this picture, you can see the triad symbol: it's the pale gray, wider triangle beneath the more narrow white triangle at the "top" of the pile in the center of the wheel. With me still? If so, the last thing that I'm going to say is that the triad stuff is all theory. In real life, I'm dealing with the yarn that I own and the colors that I've purchased, so I'm trying to come as close as I can with what I have. One could become very particular about this project, but as we can see, I'm just all about going with the flow.

And, finally, plans for the next three squares. All bagged up, having residence in the wooden bowl while the rest of the yarn, bagged by color families, goes into the wicker laundry basket where I keep my small stash. (Honest. Aside from the Tahki for the blanket, I own very little yarn).

Here's a square based on a yellow-blue triad, using tints and shades. (That's a post for another day.) This one looks interesting: red-orange and blue-violet.
And what I always think of as the Dr. Seuss color family: a complementary relationship - also a triangle but further apart on the color wheel - of reds and yellow-greens. If you look back to our color wheel above, the complementary symbol is the narrow white triangle at the very "top" of the pile in the center of the wheel.

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