Friday, October 26, 2007

more trees

Today we go back to trees - another tree of life in bead embroidery by Sheila Stockton - and watching how a beaded tree grows from the seeds of inspiration to the full growth of a finished product. The first part of inspiration comes from scripture, in this case, Sheila says, "since olive trees are such long living trees:"

They’ll build houses
and move in.
They’ll plant fields
and eat what they grow.
No more building a house
that some outsider takes over,
No more planting fields
that some enemy confiscates,
For my people will be as long-lived as trees,
my chosen ones will have satisfaction in their work.
Isaiah 65:16-17* (The Message)

Here you can see the seed growing into a colored pencil sketch in Sheila's journal and below it in the body of text is another scriptural reference to the tree of life in Revelation 22:2, "On each side of the river grew the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit with a fresh crop each month." Some translations specify that each fruit is a different kind of fruit, and this reference to twelve kinds of fruit is part of what has inspired Sheila to render the tree of life as different fruit bearing trees. We'll wait to see if she gets to twelve...

At this stage, you can see the pencil sketch on the cloth (including some color reference) and the embroidery in progress. We happened to catch it at a point where she had just finished a length of thread and had tied it off in the back, otherwise, you might see the very fine needle that she works with.

And finally the finished piece - I think this whole process took her about week, not counting the conceptual process and the many hours of searching for just the right beads for the work.

*On a scriptural note, the verse she chose to accompany this piece, is from a section of Isaiah specifically referring to the New Earth, when Jesus will be back on earth with his people, bringing Heaven down and restoring God's relationship to humankind.

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