Monday, April 26, 2010

More of Betty Chen Louis on my Website

This morning I added another page of needlework designs from Betty.
For quick reference: and click on 'elegant embroidery' on the yellow navigation bar.

Here is another opportunity to see more work by the person I think is the best designer/teacher now working in my world of needlework, so don't miss the opportunity to study her sense of line and color.

As you look at her work please take a few minutes to notice the following: the transitions of line and color in her work, the flow of the design elements, the relationships of the elements one to another and her unequaled sense of the interaction of positive-negative space. All of these are things that help make her work so elegant and graceful. Put another way: the elements of Betty's designs live so comfortably in their space.

Please take some time and visit and revisit, learn and study her work. Most of all, enjoy.

Gay Ann

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Betty Chen Louis on my website

Late last night I posted some of Betty Chen Louis' needlework including the Cityscapes she will teach of the Embroiderers' Guild (EGA) at their national seminar in San Francisco in September.

Seeing the collection of Betty's Cityscapes is a must, as IMHO they are some of the best contemporary embroidery. She is the mistress of line and color in our needlework world and if you look at her work you will instantly understand why.

Betty has taught at almost every national seminar for the past gazillion years and now for the first time, she is offering a class online through Shining Needle Society. Her classes aren't like the majority of needlework classes where we show people how to recreate our projects stitch by stitch. Betty's classes always go a step further by incorporating work on design even when students are recreating what she has made.

I am excited to see the opportunity come to Shining Needle Society and our online needlework community.

Gay Ann

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Op Ed: The Power of a Photograph

In the past couple of weeks I have posted photos of work by three people who are teaching at EGA's seminar in San Francisco this September. The idea began because a friend of mine pointed out that some of the photographs in the seminar issue of Needle Arts were unclear to say the least. The problem is, many people planning to attend the seminar choose their classes by the photographs of the projects, and how likely would a person opt for a class that looked like a yellow glob instead of a delicate piece of whitework?

I chose three teachers whose projects looked less than sparkling in EGA's online and printed seminar brochures; I asked if they would like to send me photographs, let me try to fix a few and then post them on my website. I was hoping to help a bit.

To correct the color cast of one of the worst photos, that is take away the yellow cast of the photo, I literally clicked on three buttons -- it took less than a minute. Such is the power of a digital camera and a computer with photographs these days.

So why aren't the seminar photographs aren't better quality? I haven't a clue. I just know that after untold amounts of work on the part of a teacher who designs and stitches a project in the best faith her work will be presented well, a photograph can do real harm to a seminar class.

I hope you who read this column will go and have a look at Jane Ellen's, Carolyn's and Sara's work on my website. Their work is wonderful and deserves nothing less than a sparkling presentation. My renditions of the photographs are far from perfect, but they do get the point across that the work is beautiful and delicate, and after all, that's what the photographs need to convey.

To see the photographs go to and click on 'Jane Ellen' and 'Carolyn'. Sara's beadwork is on my homepage.

Gay Ann