When I look up, I see branches that fill the sky and see changes in the background of the branches. It is amazing to imagine that everyday we are exposed to these changes. Even as I stand watching the branches, blue sky, and clouds, I see nuanced changes as the wind causes the clouds to move slowly across the sky.
Below are images of two different trees that provide distinct visions of how the world can appear. Both trees loomed over me. The tree to the left is one on campus in between buildings around Statler Hall, and the tree to the right is a tree on Buffalo St. near the Commons.
The dark silhouettes of the branches are very stark in comparison to their baby blue sky backgrounds. I love these silhouettes because of their uniqueness and dynamism. The tree to the right suggests a transient appearance– the tree was initially bare, snow fell on top of the branches, the snow will melt, and the tree will return to its bare state. When Spring comes, I will be able to see another transient change as the tree produces leaves and possibly flowers. This will create other silhouettes in the sky. The ability of these trees to naturally change and provide us with changing imagery is awe inspiring.
It is interesting to think about the energy processes that the trees encounter as they physically change in appearance. The trees strive to conserve their energy during Winter by not producing leaves. We see the benefit of their Winter conservation during Spring when they bloom. Noticing that it takes time for these trees to physically change for their own benefit and inadvertently for our aesthetic pleasures is significant to our recognition of the value of everyday trees.
The ideas that trees create dynamic silhouettes, fill space, change regularly, and require energy to exist as they do, inspired me to parallel trees with the art of crochet. Below is an image of my crochet process.
Interlocking loops fill in empty spaces to eventually provide warmth. The triple crochet stitches are tall with several twisted loops that make them strong and stable. The triple stitch creates a look of greater texture, provide greater flexibility, and feeling of softness. Triple stitches have larger gaps in between, which is different from single and double crochet stitches.
Triple stitches can grow half an inch with interlooping that takes no longer than 10 seconds. This characteristic reminds me of the growth of branches that expand the trees’ physical presence. As the crochet structure grows, it consumers energy and changes similar to the tree. Even though crochet is dictated by human aesthetic preferences and tree growth depends on soil, nutrients, the atmosphere, and the sun; the idea that the human mind created crochet and nature created trees conveys converging relationships.
The brown, black, and blue crochet scarf above was created for Elizabeth Fox by me and my sister. The scarf embodies our collective energy through the creation of each triple stitch. Each stitch contributed to increases that led to it swirling, dynamic appearance, just like the dynamism of the branches. Additionally, this scarf can take a different appearance by the way it naturally falls and is arranged each time it is worn. Its aesthetic appeal is transient like the tree.