Posted by: Laura Pierce | February 26, 2012

Fiber Jam Portraits

Alex by Pat Merikallio

Can you use blue, purple and green in a Portrait of a child?  Why… Naturally!  it adds liveliness!  This is Pat’s first colour portrait; she based it on an old American painting of a child, but made it her granddaughter, Alex, added her cat and a cat’s paw rug.  Inside the rich paisley border you find Pat’s initials and 1996; that’s the year I started hooking.

Phyllis as Queen Mary of England by Pat Merikallio

Here’s is Pat’s latest portrait rug, her laughing sister Phyllis in a beautiful dress, crown and frame.  This is just off the hooking frame, soon to be delivered to it’s new home.

Family from long ago by Sarah Province

Sarah found a small faded photograph of her father’s family, he’s the baby, and managed to create a beautiful hooked portrait from it.   It is fun bringing these little sepia photos to life with colour and the luster of wool.  don’t ya love Grandma’s hat?

Alice Neel by Diane Learmonth

 Here’s another colourful portrait; a self-portrait by Diane, inspired by Alice Neel.  It was great to meet Diane, face to face!  we’ve met via the internet, which is good, but nothing is as good as campin’ out and fiber jammin’  together.  A connection we didn’t talk about is that Diane taught wide-cut self-portraits to Patti Stephens and Nancy Terhaar several years ago.  I saw these 2 portraits on-line and was inspired to hook my own wide-cut scrap portrait.   it’s a great way to go; using up scrap wool, forcing yourself to make choices by value.
Pat Merikallio also uses cut scrap wool as needed.   it’s a challenge that echoes back to our fore-mothers who had to use whatever scrap wool they could accumulate.  If you don’t have exactly the right colour, you can approximate that colour by using a couple of similar colours side by side.  if you run out of a colour, use something of the same family, it’s traditional! 

Al, Will and Chuck

Al is Sunny Runnells’ husband and Captain in Metz. Sunny took my Portrait Workshop in Victoria last year and created this wonderful portrait. She added the background from another photograph. Will is my husband’s grandfather, as a young man. it’s based on a small sepia photo on a strip of photo proofs. Chuck is Nancy Winn’s husband and her subject for a Portrait Workshop I taught for the Wine Country Rug Hookers guild last year. Nancy used lots of colour to create this lively portrait!

I asked Pat to teach Portraits at the Fiber Jam and she agreed, even though 1 day is not enough time for this subject. Several jammers joined in at the last minute, creating patterns the day before. We dumped scraps out on the table, got started and had several colourful portraits in good shape by the end of the day. I don’t often take in-progress photos, but my daughter Emma took some that i’ll share.


Up close Mona Lisa by Laura Pierce

Colourful up close kitty by Nancy Winn

There are several other portraits from the day and i’m looking forward to seeing them completed; particularly a yellow portrait that Sara Judith was working on… I love yellow!  perhaps i’ll see it at Rockaway; Friends by the Sea Rug Camp.  Several of us Jammers will be re-united there.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: