If you've been reading this blog for a while now then you may be familiar with the monthly "Colour Collaborative" posts. A group of us - and we have changed a little over the years as people have left and joined - post on an agreed date and theme around the subject of colour. My first post was in June 2013 at the very start of the project, and I wrote about Home, always a subject I'm happy to talk about.
But this will be my last Colour Collaborative post and now, at the end of my third year, feels like a natural time to step down. I spent a while looking back through these posts and one of the things that leapt out at me was how often I've ended up writing about nature. This isn't, and never will be, a nature blog. The natural world features here from time to time as part of the fabric of life, but you'll never find me correctly identifying a bird or flower, or offering gardening tips. Others do that so much better. And yet I wrote about nature a lot, about it's rich and varying colour, how it can be pale or bright, quiet or loud, and how endlessly inspiring it is. From the delicate silver and pink of dried hydrangea heads
|Fading - November 2013|
to the palest and deepest pinks all tucked up inside the first bloom on a camellia bush
|Bud - March 2014|
to the pewters, grey and silvers of wet winter's day.
|Storm - February 2014|
Colour and contrast and drama everywhere you look.
But the avenue I've really enjoyed exploring is the colour combinations that so often emerge within the natural world. I'll look at the colours really closely on, say, a bird or shell, and start thinking how utterly fantastic they look together, how perfectly matched and balanced they are, how harmonious.
Some favourites include:
A plate of heirloom squashes in the autumn.
|Halloween - October 2014|
These beautiful ranunculus stems on a carefully laid table.
|Tradition - April 2014|
This splendid seagull, his colours reflecting the landscape behind him.
|Bird - March 2015|
The ear-like interior of a shell.
|Found - June 2015|
Maybe it's just me, but I can imagine so many scarves, blankets and throws, so many yarn or fabric based creations in the palates above, and I guess that's when it gets really fun for me. When I'm so taken with an idea that I go on to make something based on a colour combination I saw in nature, like the cushion below.
Inspired by the brown trees against winter sunsets and sunrises, the colours in this project chose themselves.
|Wooly - January 2014|
And these four hoops - such a delight to make from start to finish - inspired by the colour changes in the seasons, which I wrote about in September 2014.
Which brings me all the way to today's prompt: seedling. I was struggling with this to be honest, as I'm sure you've realised by now, but it occurred to me that something which keeps me going, both in blogging and in real life, is the pure joy I find in making something with my hands, from the thinking and the choosing and the starting to the long process which brings an idea to fruition. And it my seedling of an idea comes from nature, then all the better. It does have the best colours after all.
Thank you so much for reading and commenting on these posts. I hope you've enjoyed them.