I have finally completed the second lesson of the red fox course I am doing with Tanja Berlin. I think I have stitched it three times, but I am finally reasonably happy with the result.
I mentioned in my last update on this piece, that Tanja had suggested I blend the colour sections a little more, to achieve a more realistic look, and eliminate the ‘blocky’ look of some of the sections. This is still something I need to work on. Whilst I am still stitching in a very ‘block by block’ fashion, when I take a step back, I can see much more clearly now how this is affecting the finished appearance. I now need to work on both correcting this and achieving a natural look when stitching the sections initially. I am going to try to work some stitches in around the existing stitching to try and create this blended look.
The final section of this lesson was to stitch in the ears. For some reason I thought this would be nice and straight forward! This finished result is the third attempt so I was definitely not understanding this at first and it was not straight forward for me!
The back ear wasn’t too bad, and I only needed to pull it out once. A note to self – if I am angry and tired from work, attempting something like this might not be a good idea! Stick to french knots!
The front ear however has a number of different sections to it, and I really struggled with the small satin stitch nature of some of the narrower colour sections of the ear. I really should have got out the magnifier for some parts!
Adding in the dark browns was straight forward enough. Where I really struggled was down the bottom section where the stitches need to take the corner and ‘bend’ a little. Whilst also trying to keep the long and short stitch going and the correct colours! There were several attempts to get it to this point where I’m reasonably OK with it.
My other ‘comment’ on my stitching is that I could probably have done with some more natural ‘tufting’ of the stitches on the outside of the ear, so he isn’t so perfectly groomed. I might go back and add these stitches in later too.
The feedback I have received from Tanja is along the same lines as what I thought it would be on the blocky nature. Her tip for future reference on the front ear is that it would have been easier had my satin stitches been at a more acute angle (so the first stitch wasn’t quite far enough down the length of the ear). Tanja said this would have made it not only easier, but also quicker as I wouldn’t have needed as many stitches as I did! So, even though that was something I thought I had ok, it needed to be even more ‘extreme’.
Now, onto some ‘quick’ stitching of lesson three! I am hoping to get a little bit off to Tanja this week just to make sure I’m on the right track to finish him off by myself!