In the studio last week we photographed embroidered mandalas with a kaleidoscope filter for a completely new arrangement of stitches. The intention of the embroidered mandala project is to allow patterns to develop from the bottom up. The process of bounces between the constraints of the physical craft and the immediacy of the digital photography.
The embroidery itself is very slow and requires a lot of patient concentration. The patterns shown here were developed directly while embroidering, following a few simple rules of connection between stitches, gradation of color, and a sense of overall movement in the mandala.
The photography using the kaleidoscope filter is fast and exciting as the stitches mirror and fold into new patterns on the screen.
Digitally Embroidered Mandalas
All the embroidery is by hand, to be sure, but the composition of elements in the photos below is digital using snippets of the actual embroidery. All the images below were generated by selective photography of the mandala shown above.
Selecting just a small portion of the colorful original mandala created completely new color palettes. Below, blue and red mandalas reflect the small snippets of manual stitches that are repeated to create new patterns.
In the next stage, the patterns that were generated with this kaleidoscope photography will be in turn embroidered by hand. The pattern will be printed on paper, pinned to the linen, and “copied” by hand. This hand embroidery of the pattern is the final artifact.