For this week’s challenge, show us something that represents security. It could be your kids happily reading under their favorite throw blanket. It could be a roaring fire chasing away the last of winter’s cold. It could be a worry stone you keep in your pocket or that favorite tee shirt that makes you feel awesome every time you put it on. Krista ~ The Daily Post
Some time ago, I discovered these daisies along the trail at Salishan, on the Oregon Coast. The security comes in knowing that I will find them – or something like them – waiting for me every time I visit the coast. The Oregon Coast is awesome!
I loved this little bit of undergrowth alongside the trail to the Salishan Spit. When I find chaotic spots of color and texture like this, it inspires and informs my knitting designs – and makes me happy!
There’s rhythm and motion all around us — this week, let’s capture some of it in a photo…
When I let my brain loose, allowing it to absorb what’s around me without trying to process anything in particular, what it often detects is choreography — unmistakable dance moves, often in unexpected places.
If you have followed my blog for long – or read my “about me” page – you know that I LOVE the beach. Part of what draws me to the beach is the endless variety of texture to be found there. Especially here on the rugged Oregon Coast, the objects to be found on the beach are richly varied, always interesting. I’m always looking for something unusual, something new, something lovely or striking.
Texture strikes me. It draws my attention. It is beautiful in its order and in its variety. Visually, as light moves over the surface of an object or vista and the eye detects changes in line and shape, this is texture. As light plays over differences in density within an object, and we see these differences, we see texture. And when the eye travels over a surface and, along the way, discovers changes in the nature of that surface, we recognize this as texture.
The pictures in this post were originally published in a Wordless Wednesday in August 2015. There were reasons for choosing these specific photos, so I wanted to revisit them – and to think about the nature of texture.
During a ridiculously long walk along this section of the beach in Newport, which I paid for later with complaining, swollen ankles and aching muscles (note to self: no more beach hikes wearing flip flops!) I was the winner in finding amazing textures, such as those in the barnacles and driftwood above.
And what about these wind shadows? I found them enchanting – sand protected from the wind by small items on the sand blocking the movement of air. This interesting textural phenomenon was all around that day.
Fascinating: an object masquerading as something quite different in nature from its own nature.
And finally, when I was heading back on that Newport hike, I came upon this impromptu sand and driftwood sculpture. Well worth the price of admission!
I finally explored the Salishan Spit in August 2014, after having been curious about it for years. It can be seen across the Siletz Bay from the highway, but I had never been there – I couldn’t even figure out how to get there! Finally I did my research, took the eight mile hike, and was mesmerized the entire time. There was something new to discover every bit of the way, from the dark sand (called “tar sand” by some locals) to a desolate “tree graveyard” filled with sunbleached, craggy remnants of an ancient forest.
When I returned to Gleneden Beach the following February to photograph the Salishan Cowl for the completed pattern, I was reminded again why this place had inspired this design. The organic, curved shapes were everywhere, from the clouds in the sky to the patterns in the sand.
As my eye finds textured nuances like these, they are filed away in my brain under “inspiration.” And some day, hopefully, bits and pieces of them will reconnect and reemerge – as a new and pleasing design.
As promised, my Camera Lucida entries are knitting-related in some way. This rusted remnant of days gone by stands beside the pathway to the Salishan Spit. It was on my second hike to the Spit, the photoshoot for the Salishan Cowl, that I took this photo. The water pump had caught my eye before, and I thought perhaps it would be an interesting way to style the cowl. None of the pictures of the water pump made it into the pattern or onto the Ravelry pattern page, but I still think the elegance of the line of the water pump juxtaposed with the rusting iron makes an interesting image, and I share it here as my entry in this week’s Camera Lucida photo challenge.
This week’s theme: Metal
a solid material which is typically hard, shiny, malleable, fusible, and ductile, with good electrical and thermal conductivity (e.g. iron, gold, silver, and aluminium, and alloys such as steel).
broken stone for use in road-making.
“the work also involves dealing with rock aggregates for potential use as suitable road metal”
This week I am brining you into a new world…a different way of looking at something that all of us have around but rarely would we consider it art…the use of metal. Take a look around you and find that simple and maybe insignificant, sometimes even dangerous piece of rust that brings to life emotions…a different spark in our eyes and a modern interpretation of rudimentary.
Show your unique view on this weeks’ theme, bring us your best art…might that be a bridge of locks that tell a story, the old barn door with nails sticking out, a sculpture covered by rust but full of character or your personalised DIY tool box …this week anything metal goes 🙂
The Salishan Cowl is another pattern which lends itself to a look into the design process. In this case, it was a matter of being immersed in a place as well as spending time pondering the building blocks of knit design, the stitches.
I’ve lived in Oregon for 25 years now, and have known of the Salishan Spa & Golf Resort since shortly after we moved here. I’ve driven by it numerous times, but it wasn’t until last August that I finally stayed there.
When I arrived, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I found that the grounds were quiet and peaceful. The room was spacious; there was a choice of restaurants and the food was delicious. The atmosphere was that of a mountain lodge even though the ocean was within walking distance.
This was to be one of my retreats at the beach, where I spend time knitting, resting, designing. I spent the first few days knitting, taking walks and puttering around. I threw a bunch of yarn (collected over the years) on a table, hoping that color combinations would jump out at me and inspire some designs:
The yarn led me down dead end paths. Perhaps they were dead end at the time and may yet lead to new designs. Time will tell.
As it turned out, though, the inspiration came from the place itself.
The resort is situated so that the lodge, restaurants and accommodations are on the east side of Highway 101. It’s about 1/4 mile walk from the rooms to the highway, which you cross to the golf course, spa and shops.
There’s even a lovely yarn shop in The Shops, In The Wind Yarns. It was new to me then, but now it’s a must-stop place whenever I go to the Coast. I love to visit and see all the new things they are working on and what new yarns they’re bringing in. There’s always something fun going on!
But I digress! At last I was going to explore the Salishan Spit, which I had always been curious about. Viewing across the Siletz Bay from Highway 101, there is a thin slice of land with houses on it. How does one get there? During my stay, I learned that The Spit is accessible by car only to residents of the gated community or to guests of the resort. Otherwise, it may be accessed by foot on a trail which begins next to the shops and golf course.
It’s a long hike to traverse the length of the spit. As I approached the end of the spit, I turned a corner and was shocked to discover that we had black (or dark gray) sand on an Oregon beach! It was one of those amazing moments when you find something completely unexpected. I had absolutely no idea we had a dark sand beach in Oregon.
You can see the dark sand over the light here:
And these organic shapes and lines:
It was all hauntingly beautiful.
The building blocks:
Also during my stay at Salishan, I spent time poring over my stitch dictionaries. One stitch in particular, the Japanese Feather, struck me as very beautiful and elegant. An added bonus: as far as lace stitches go, it’s pretty straightforward and easy. And it’s apparent to me that my subconscious zeroed in on that stitch pattern as a representation of all the lovely lines and shapes I had seen during my wanderings – even including that “S” in the Salishan signs.
The process and the pattern:
During the next six months, the impressions from Salishan and the thoughts of that stitch remained with me. Sometime in December of 2014 or early January 2015, I found the perfect edging for the cowl: the Herringbone Stitch. It would create a pleasing contrast of a highly structured edging with the organic shape of the Japanese Feather. Additionally, it was a stitch that wasn’t being used by a large number of designers, so it would create a unique look. And finally, it’s a fun stitch to work, albeit time consuming.
The pattern also includes the option of working a Seed Stitch border. It is easier and quicker than the Herringbone Stitch border, and it still creates an elegant look.
Worked in Malabrigo Silky Merino, this cowl just floats! It also is lovely in Rowan Felted Tweed.
This design is really one of my favorites. Not only do I feel like a million bucks whenever I wear this cowl, but I have the treasured memory of finding this beautiful and unexpected, somewhat hard-to-reach beach, which I hope to visit many, many more times in the future.