My last series, "Agate Agape," led right into this new series. When I was looking at the Agate Agape paintings as a whole, one jumped right out at me because of its wonderful color. Take a look and see if you can guess:
I have lots of favorites in this series, but see that blue one in the upper left? That one is called "The Tide of Love," and it was inspired by blue-and-white porcelain. Here's a better view of it:
Thinking about the color blue naturally led me to think about other blue-and-white things, especially shibori. Shibori is the traditional Japanese method of dying cloth using "resist" methods. You can think of it as tie-dye. Although it's a bit more than tie-dye, it was the inspiration for the trippy hippie fabric that became popular in the Sixties.
Here's a few examples of classical Shibori fabric, from "Katie" on Flickr, via Wikipedia:
There are lots of ways to make a shibori pattern. The "tie dye" way is to tie the fabric tightly in bunches with thread or rubber bands, so that the dye doesn't go where the rubber band is. Another method is to pleat the fabric and clamp it between two pieces of wood. Only the part that sticks out of the clamp gets dyed. And there are many other methods.
In Japan, shibori is traditionally done in blue-and-white, although I have done it myself in red and yellow. Although this skirt looks like hippie tie-dye, I actually sewed the fabric closed with a needle and thread, which is what created the honeycomb effect in the middle of the sunflower.
Although it is often used to make a casual pattern, shibori can also be very formal. Here's a fragment of a 17th-century kimono:
Wowsa! Having tried this myself, let me tell you that this took a lot of skill!
So that's the "Shibori" part of this series. I decided to give it a catchy title, and "Amori" is the Italian word for "loves," so it seemed like the perfect combination.
(And according to a casual internet search, it's also the Esperanto word for "lovemaking." Now you know! Tell all of your friends. They will be impressed by your mastery of a dead language which hasn't really lived in the first place.)
And meanwhile, stick around. There's lots more fun to come!