Tiger Tiger Burning Bright
Sometimes I see a pattern or a motif and then it sits in the back of my brain and just keeps tapping me on the shoulder. It whispers, ‘Make me into a dress…’ or ‘I will make great wallpaper…’ and, it doesn’t matter how busy I am, it just sneaks on to my design list or steals a page out of my sketchbook when I was meant to be drawing something else.
So, this tiger pattern was inspired from looking at Japanese style tattoos in the waiting room of a tattoo shop (I was there to get my kids’ ears pierced) and it was also also partly inspired by Japanese floral patterns and also partly inspired by a shirt I saw on a Netflix show. Then, all things came together to make this print which I have called ‘Lilac Tigers’ because there is a flush of lilac and pink in the bottom layer created using layer masks and hue shifts on Photoshop.
It makes great wallpaper and it has already proven popular in the miniature dollhouse world. I have just ordered a metre of it for ‘another’ knockerfrock for my own personal collection because you can never have too many knockerfrocks in my opinion…
And then, once I had printed a mock up for our dollhouse, I turned the leftover printed paper into a collage for a now-Egyptian looking lady who I was orginally modelling off a Tretchikoff “Lady of the Orient’ 1950s art print we have in our lounge. (I have been teaching portraiture at school and have been practising at home. I have always found drawing people’s faces accurately quite hard - so I am modelling how we can target our own weaknesses mindfully as practising artists…)
Plus, when I was designing it, I was also reminiscing about the William Blake poem ‘The Tyger’ written in 1794. He was a genius with his rhthmic verse. It’s a busy place, my brain.
Here’s the poem, just for fun.
The Tyger by William Blake:
Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
In what distant deeps or skies.
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand, dare seize the fire?
And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?
What the hammer? what the chain,
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp,
Dare its deadly terrors clasp!
When the stars threw down their spears
And water'd heaven with their tears:
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
Tyger Tyger burning bright,
In the forests of the night:
What immortal hand or eye,
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?
If you love this print too, you can order it as fabric and wallpaper or as a knockerfrock by sending me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Easy to imagine for your big spaces too…