Monday, June 1, 2015

Dragons and wardens and cross stitch ...

Hosted by the lovely Trish, here:

So,  a few months ago, I ventured into video games for basically the first time ever.

I never played them before because I'm absolutely terrible with gaming consoles. I can't use them for some reason.

But THEN somehow I found out you could also play using mouse/keyboard and so I thought "well, I'll give it a go, see what happens."

(Stay with me.)

What happened was I bought Dragon Age Origins and Dragon Age 2 in a bundle that Mighty Ape had on special at the time. I leaped in with Dragon Age because I'd seen people talk about Inquisition, and I thought "hey, that sounds like fun," and ... well, the rest is history, sort of.

I started playing in December and ... what, seven months later? I'm finally nearly at the end of the game. Go me, right? (THIS IS ABOUT CREATIVITY I SWEAR JUST BEAR WITH ME).

Now, I tend to get enthusiastic about things that I love.

Cats, for example.
Whittaker's artisan sea salt and caramel chocolate.

And I am very very very enthusiastic about Dragon Age. So much so, that I went poking about on Etsy recently, looking for cross-stitch patterns of the Grey Wardens' motto.

(Told you it was about creativity.)

I found a couple of patterns, and they were ... nice. But not what I wanted.

So, for the first time ever, as someone who cannot draw a stick person, I'm embarking on creating my very own pattern.

I'm not actually .... creating it, as in drawing it from scratch because that way madness lies for us all.

It's more ... a cobbling-together.

The Grey Wardens motto is this:
In peace, vigilance. In war, victory. In death, sacrifice.

Also, in the legend of the game, the original Grey Wardens would fly into battle on griffons. So I want to incorporate that, too.

I started with the alphabet. For the "I" on each sentence, I wanted something a little bit elaborate - and I found a free cross-stitch alphabet that suited my purposes. (I found it by googling 'free old english cross-stitch alphabets'). Here's the link:

For the rest of the motto, I wanted something with a tiny kick to it, but nothing too elaborate.

My Saturday night stitch-and-watch friend has a book of alphabets, so I've borrowed that for the lettering of the rest of the motto. On the book cover to your left, it's the small green one, second alphabet down. It's simple, but still has a bit of a curl to it.

The final piece of the puzzle was the griffon. So I googled once again - Dragon Age griffon - and found one that, as far as I know, falls under fair use. I'm not planning on selling the final product, so I saved the image and ran it through a free pattern generator. I guessed at the colour numbers - I chose 15, but may do it again with 10 because it's all shades of blue and grey, which is going to be the colour palatte for the whole thing.

Wait, I lied. There's one more piece - I have to decide whether I'm going to do a border or not. To keep my options open, I went through some of my magazines, and found a simple graphic one that would work. It's a bit thin, is the only thing, but other than that, it should work all right. Plus, I'm just doing this for myself, so if I mess it up, I'm not disappointing anyone else.

My friend suggested starting with the words, so I would know how big the border would need to be, which is good advice. My 'vision' is to have the griffon in the lower-right corner, below the motto, then encase it all in a border. Because of the griffon's colour palette, everything will be done in varying shades of blue and grey.

I'm thinking of making the "I's" of each line a darker shade than the rest. I'm debating whether to do the rest of the motto in a different shade of blue, do blue/grey for each line, or something else.

I may end up stitching the griffon first, just to see what colours are available.

Now that I type all of that out, it strikes me as ridiculously ambitious - lol.

Will that stop me? (Signs point to no.)

I sketched out a rough design (I stole Spawn's crayola felts and scribbled on a page to help with visualsation. As you'll be able to see, my artistic skills are ... well. You'll see ...
 So, what's inspiring you this week?


Anonymous said...

Did you know that my dogs are WireHaired Pointing GRIFFONs?! But they aren't lions with wings. I do wonder why they are called Griffons but haven't yet figured it out.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

Maree--this is AWESOME!!! Please please please be sure to share your progress because I'm totally intrigued by the whole "make your cross stitch design" process. I didn't know that you could run an image through a pattern maker.

Linda said...

Yes, please show your progress. I think it's awesome that you would even attempt this. I have similar ideas but never really follow through.

Maree said...

Care: I did not know that!! That's extremely awesome :)

Trish: I'll be sure to! I have to finish the X Files one for my friend first - lol

Linda: I'm the same, usually, but I'm hopefully motivated to see it through :)