Calling Down from the Branches

Calling Down from the Branches

This is the final installment of my large nuno felted autumn landscape, it is finally finished and I have even stretched it over stretcher bars so it is ready to go the framer next week. It is my entry for the 4th Quarter Challenge  of the year long tree challenge. I’m way ahead this time. Yay!

In my last post, I was trying to determine how to handle the ground and prevent the background trees from “floating”. I decided to try leaf litter on the ground. I used the same fabric and paper that I used for the leaves on the branches. You can see on the left hand photo the first attempt. I had some leaves that were already cut out but these were much too big. It made the ground move forward since the leaves were the same size as the foreground tree leaves. Not the look I wanted. So I cut the leaves into tiny pieces and scattered them about. I didn’t want to bore you with all of the time I took arranging the leaves. You can see the progression from left to right. I had taken over 10 photos of this progression but thought I would show the first, middle and last photos. Perhaps you can tell a difference that way! Once I had the leaves where I wanted them, I glued them down with an archival gel medium. I don’t usually use glue but these pieces were so small, I thought that was the best option.

Next up was to determine the color of the “matte”. This is the fabric that I stitch the nuno felt down on to hold it in place for framing. I decided to go with the darker grey fabric. Then I stitched along the edges of the nuno felt to hold it to the background fabric. Normally, I would then lace the fabric over matte board or foam core but this piece is big and I decided to use stretcher bars instead. The stretcher bar frame is 23″ x 34″. I wrapped the fabric around the stretcher bars and stapled it in place. The hardest part of that process is getting the nuno felt landscape in the right position since you staple from the back side.

Nuno Felted Landscape with Autumn Birch Trees and leaf litter on the ground.

Here’s the piece on the stretcher bars ready to be framed. I will use my usual slim black frame. Did anyone notice anything else that was changed at the very end? Calling Down from the Branches is now ready to go to the framers and then off to the gallery.

20 thoughts on “Calling Down from the Branches

  1. The fallen leaves really ground the trees and look so good – you were right to make them smaller than those on the trees.
    The picture is beautiful and it won’t hang around very long before it’s sold!

    We noticed you’ve straightened the top but apart from that we’re not observant enough to see the final tweak – please tell 🙂

    1. Thanks Ladies! I hope you’re right about the piece selling quickly, that would be nice. The top kind of straightened itself when I stitched it down to the background fabric. Karen got the answer with shading the branch where it attaches to the trunk.

  2. This is beautiful Ruth and the addition of the shading where the branch meets the trunk has worked really well. I’m sure it won’t be in the gallery for long!

    1. Thanks Karen, you found the change with your “eagle eyes”. I hope it sells quickly but it’s always hard to tell.

  3. The fabric you’ve used for the matt looks just right Ruth. The markings on it are all in the right place to compliment the picture. I see that you have cut off the bit at the bottom but I like that you have left the trunk of the birch in the foreground very slightly longer, so that it adds to the look that we’re not seeing the whole of the trunk. I must admit that otherwise I can’t see what else you’ve changed though.
    I agree that this one should fly out of the gallery in no time.

    1. Thanks Ann, it’s always luck if the markings on the background piece look like they were planned. I just stick the fabric in a bag to dye so it is a random process. The change is the branch off the large tree has been shaded. I actually thought of this because of your comment on a previous post that it was a leaning tree. I wanted to show that it was a branch off the large tree.

  4. The addition of the leaves is everything, Ruth! The whole scenery just comes alive 🙂 I would’ve asked myself how you managed to add them to the wool (they’re just so tiny) so I thank you for explaining the glue!

    1. Thanks Leonor, I agree that the addition of leaf litter on the ground really helped to create more distance in the background. The pieces were definitely too tiny to stitch down so the glue was the answer.

  5. I am so impressed by your persistence and careful thought as you developed this piece. It is wonderful and the addition of the leaves on the ground as well as the shading of the branch at the trunk is just perfect!! Yes, I do believe this piece will sell quickly! I would like to see a photo of it when it is framed. Your work is definitely inspirational and I appreciate seeing the process as it helps me understand that our felted creations require time and consideration of what to do next! Thank you.

    1. Thanks Donna, I find that persistence is one of the key things in creating artwork. If there is something in a piece that is not working for you, don’t discard the piece, see it as an opportunity to improve the work and consider how to do that. I will most likely show the framed pieces but they are all a simple black frame so that it doesn’t take away from the focus of the artwork.

  6. Oh I’m so pleased that you chose some falling leaves to complete the work, you can almost see them falling! So lovely.

  7. It looks great Ruth, the leaves really did ground the other trees and add a lot of depth to the picture. I didn’t spot the change but it does make the branch look more attached. Will some of the fabric mat show after its framed? I don’t remember what you do.

    1. Thanks Ann, sometimes it’s the smallest changes that help make the landscape be more believable. About an inch of the fabric matte will show on all sides after it’s framed.

  8. This is so lovely Ruth. Your progression photos truly show the picture coming to life. I predict that it will not grace the walls of the gallery for very long as it will quickly find its forever home!

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