Interweave Press recently release the DVD "A Fiber Artist's Guide to Color" with Laura Bryant. They've posted a teaser on their site (http://www.interweavestore.com/Weaving/DVDs-Videos/A-Fiber-Artists-Guide-to-Color-DVD.html).
It's a good teaser. I watched it and was really excited about it. But, I'm not sure yet about fiber art instruction via videos. It turns out I love books. I devour books. I slurp them up and then go back and nibble on the good parts. And the good parts change from day to day or month to month.
After I got excited about this video, I started some research. Who is Laura Bryant? What else has she made/produced/written? It turns out that she is a fiber artist--she weaves & knits & dyes--and one of her specialties is color. My library is part of a fantastic interlibrary loan system. Today I picked up two of Laura's books "The Yarn Stash Workbook" and "Knitting with Novelty Yarns" (by Laura & Barry Klein). Page 6 of the workbook has photos similar to the dvd trailer. She discusses taking a crazy mix of color and making some order out of it.
So, I tried it.
I have a collection of my grandmother's sewing thread (I use it...slowly, but I use it). Here is a random tray of yarns:
Then, I tried getting all the light colors to the left and all the "heavy" (dark) colors to the right:
I realized that I was tending to group the threads by color as well as light/heavy, so I intentionally tried to group them in lines of color.
It was a good exercise. Laura comments, "Artists spend years training their eyes to detect fine nuances in weight between colors..." I'm not trained yet, but I'm getting started! :)