Color Inspiration

In my continuous quest to find and connect with other artists who drench their lives in color and beads, I have discovered a beady kindred spirit, Beverly Ash Gilbert.

Wandering around the web, I stumbled upon a blurb about the release of Beverly’s new book, Beaded Colorways: Freeform Beadweaving Projects and Palettes.

A rich title full of words I love: color, freeform, beads, palettes.

After excitedly purchasing her book, I went on an internet journey to find out all I could about this artist who loves color and freeform beadwork as much as I.

Inspired by the colors of nature in her northwest home, Beverly creates what she calls “bead soups”, mixes of seed beads, gemstones and pearls in variations of a hue. Mmmmmm, just the combination of those 2 words evokes yummy and juicy to me so I know that I’m on the right path, the path of rich becoming. Beverly goes on to create art jewelry pieces using these “bead soups”, transitioning from one “soup” to another in a beautiful flow of color. Take a look at the gorgeous pieces in her gallery.

In my own freeform approach, I choose a color palette inspired by nature.

a sunrise

an autumn walk in the woods

and then create patches of color (from that palette) that weave over and around each other.

Beverly has inspired me to expand how I look at my color choices and enhance my work with my own “bead soups”. Even though her clear writing and instruction speaks to all levels of beading experience, I find that it is ideal for someone like me who already has a fairly large bead stash for mixing and blending.

A New England winter palette threads its way through the fiber of my being these days, evidenced by my latest knitting creations.

and the beads I chose on my birthday bead store excursion.

Hmmmm, yes, winter….but look….peeks of spring here and there.

I think it’s time for another freeform bracelet.

What inspires you at this cold, muted color time of year?

The color of springtime is in the flowers, the color of winter is in the imagination. ~Ward Elliot Hour


12 comments on “Color Inspiration

  1. Lynn says:

    And I thought I was the only tea-swilling, knitting beader on the planet!

    Great post! I knit with color all year-round. Red in particular. Just purchased some gold metallic seed beads to decorate knitting, so we’ll see what happens.

    I admire anyone who can do freeform beading.

  2. Judy Shea says:

    I’m feeling it, Karen.

  3. Morwyn says:

    What is it about the pale, soft sunrise palette that calls to us? It must be in the ether – either that or the Collective Unconscious is at work again. Truly gorgeous, m’dear!

  4. artandtea says:

    Perhaps it calls to us as the light that illuminates the darkness? I’ve always loved those delicate, pearly colors. They’re so hopeful. Thanks!

  5. Artist says:

    The colors are just amazing. As being synesthete I live a life in colors. Synesthesia means that I see colors when I see words and numbers.I transform this in paintings of names and birthdays.

  6. Arline says:

    Simply gorgeous, Karen! Now there is another book for me to buy. I’m doing a class in February on color for our Bead Society. That will make a great addition. Thanks.

  7. artandtea says:

    Thanks Arline! Great idea! Enjoy your class.

  8. maryanne says:

    Isn’t Beverly’s work and her book wonderful!! All of us who love color, fiber and beads can really relate to her wonderful work. Did you know she has a free newsletter that you can sign up for on her site? It’s more of the wonderfulness of color and beads!

  9. Ruth Ann says:

    I also drink tea, knit, bead, and a few other things. Karen, your work is magnificent as always!

  10. artandtea says:

    Thanks Maryanne, I’m already signed up!

    Hi Ruth Ann! We’re kindred spirits, you and I. Thanks for your very kind words. 🙂

  11. […] That gently awakening energy has inspired me to create my own beady concoctions here in my studio. Taking direction on bead color mixing from Beverly Ash Gilbert’s Beaded Colorways book, I’ve experimented with some bead soup of my own in a neutral, winter-inspired palette.  I originally wrote about my color inspiration here. […]

  12. Oh what gorgeous soft, calm palettes. Your soup is divine!

    I’m so glad that I may have helped nudge you further on your colorful path.

    And a cup of tea sounds perfect right now…

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