Here is an example of the process I use when making wall hangings.
For this particular piece, 'Mr. Gnome's Underground Adventure', the scene came to me in a dream. I actually made myself wake up enough in the middle of the night to concentrate on the image that had come to me, so that I would remember it well enough to sketch in the morning (I didn't trust my 2 a.m. sketching ability!).
A few days before, I used one of my birthday gift certificates that I have been saving, and bought two lovely new sketch books. There is truly a difference, reaching for a book that I love to hold in my hands, with thick pages to put pencil to paper.
Creating a scene in my book, and then facing the challenge of contemplating how I will accomplish the task of transferring this image into wool art is daunting, yet satisfying when I feel I have been successful. After I feel comfortable with a sketch, I then break down the image into pieces, deciding which medium I will use for each part. I then like to re-sketch each part individually, and lay them out of the background I'm using, adjusting pieces here and there and letting myself become inspired with additional ideas.
For the above piece, I ventured into the use of more needle felting within the tapestry, although I retained the use of touches of wool felt here in there to create variations of texture and depth. Practicing the use of perspective in a piece is a learning process for me. I found, through trial and error, that layering twisted pieces of wool roving onto the piece as I needle felted helped greatly in creating the perspective within the birch trees.
Truly an intensive labor of love, such a complex work has a unique satisfaction, yet I also love creating wall hangings in a more simplistic form as well. I love stripping images to their basic outline in a more abstract approach, such as in Tufted Spring Rebirth.
I will love to look back, as my work is consistently led in new directions, at the variation and progression of drawings in my sketch book. I try to always sketch images and ideas when starting a piece, so that I may look back and see where the process began for me. I hope you enjoy seeing a sample of this process as well!