What moves you?
If something moves you, it can inspire you. Now to capture that inspiration and turn it into a design, it doesn't have to be an exact representation, in fact it is often more interesting if it isn't.
With Northern Nights it was my love for winter and home and hearth that brought images to mind and while some of those actual things made their way into the design, cats, teapots, snow. It was also how those things feel that I wanted to express and I think color is one of the most powerful ways to accomplish that. I wanted the cold of the blues and the warmth of the golds to be felt before the parts of the design would be recognized.
Color is so incredibly powerful. I was reminded of this recently watching a dvd of one of the BEST examples I've ever seen of the use of color in a design. If you'd like to see what I mean, rent a copy of the Eugene Onegin opera filmed at the Metropolitan Opera, starring Renee Fleming. The set designer used a very minimalist style, but the Colors are astounding! They express the time, the place, the emotion of every scene. The use of the vibrant autumn golds, the purples and blacks, the green and browns of background and costumes are all a key part of what makes this one of the most highly recommended operas on dvd. Those colors pierce you and move you directly into the story and the glorious music.
And it is color that led me to the next design. After Northern Nights, I wanted to try creating something that brought spring to mind. We live where lilacs grow abundantly and I thought of shades of green, mauve and purple. How could that then be expressed in a design?
Next post - Heart Note Alley