19" x 37"
detail: This work entirely hand embroidered and has taken me the better part of a year to complete. Luckily I have had a lot of time on my hands, and needed to keep them (my hands) busy to keep my mind peaceful.
detail: this turtle was inspired by the photo below that I took while exploring the Galapagos Islands. This was an unforgettable adventure that was in the true spirit of 'wanderlust'; defined by Merriam-Webster as a "strong longing for or impulse toward wandering"
Watching these prehistoric creatures wander was mesmerizing. With seemingly no where to go they patiently and steadily kept on going.
detail: this depiction was inspired by the photo below.
I began the project with the hand-dyed, yellow cotton and drew the 2 tortoises on to the fabric. I created the shell, the under cavity of the shell, and the faces with embroidery floss. Their legs I worked through with free motion stitchery because I wanted them to have the three dimensional feeling of the real dimpled legs. After the tortoises were done, I felt that they needed a context since they seemed to be 'floating on the fabric' and so I worked hand dyed silk organza and cotton around them to set the scene. Then I stitched seed stitch over the layers of organza. in various tones with embroidery floss. Not a straightforward path to the destination, but then wanderlust is never straightforward.
Robert Louis Stevenson wrote; " I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move." This is what I miss most during COVID. The freedom to travel freely for travel's sake. I have an itching lust for wandering.