Pandemic Pattern 3 – Auditioning Colour And Stitch

The pandemic pattern on my mind at the moment is that miniscule unit of the highly infectious corona virus that emerged in China late last year, swept through Earth’s human population and turned our normal lives upside down. Everyone has already experienced at least some effect of inconvenience and anxiety, and the illness itself is causing pain, death and sorrow. The majority of patients recover, but some of those people are left with residual physical and/or neurological effects.

Thanks to the wonders of electron microscopy we’re all too familiar with what the virus looks like. The particles of virus are not molecules or cells but virions, represented everywhere as a round thing with spiky bits. I have always intended to represent this PP in some shocking colours to convey the severity of its threat.

Colour+black is always dramatic. I love colour on grey, too, but the effect is softer.

Thinking about colour and the virus, I googled and found my way to an interesting article on how the colour in those graphic images is completely due to artistic licence.  Electron microscope images of the virus are seen in shades of grey only, as the virions’ particle size is many times smaller than what can be affected by light waves to appear coloured. Adding colour to the images draws our attention, making them more scary, so my instinct to use flourescent and bright colours for drama was spot on.

Tags: ,

2 Responses to “Pandemic Pattern 3 – Auditioning Colour And Stitch”

  1. Debbie says:

    I have just read your comments on ‘finding your voice’ on the and have come to take a look at your blog.
    On the grey the red stands out more dominantly than on the black, making the ‘virus’ more ‘important’ than the background. However, the black has the connotations of death and funereal symbolism. Both work well, it depends what you are wanting to depict.

  2. Alison says:

    Thanks for your interesting comment regarding the relative backgrounds, Debbie. Green is my favourite colour, and while I was in that shop my eye was caught by the same fabric in utterly flourescent green. I couldn’t resist buying some – in fact the 2.15m left on the bolt …I know from experience that for an irresistible fabric like that, when I do want it there’ll be none in the store – in fact the guy went off to see if there was another bolt out the back – and came back with a swatch that was ‘close’ but not right.

Leave a Reply

Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS).

All images and text are © Alison Schwabe
Reproduction of any kind is expressly prohibited without written consent.

Translate »