|The new hat in use with the brim turned up.|
My inspiration was a postcard from Kenai Fjords, Alaska. After identifying the various colors in the photo (I ignored the text colors), I discovered that there were too many colors and narrowed my focus on the seals and the rock where they are sunbathing.
At this point, my notes become extremely sketchy! The basic process is that I used the colors I saw in the photo to choose my rovings, blended the rovings into rolags and spun them into the yarns I used. My choice of knitting patterns (this is based on the "Golden Pear" baby hat from ravelry) adds some extra blending as two colors are used to knit a transition area between the single color segments.
Going mostly by memory and what I see in the yarn, the rocks at the bottom of the photo are represented by the dark brown at the band of the hat. They are a combination of a natural brown wool, Romney wool dyed black, and maybe some grey wool. The mossy rocks above the seals were interpreted by blending the same natural brown wool used for the previous rocks, but blended with some green dyed wools (and maybe other colors...I really don't remember the details as well as I would like!). The seals in the sun are represented by the copper and cream band of the hat. I blended copper colored mohair top with cream colored fibers, probably undyed Romney. I intentionally limited the amount of blending so that the resulting yarn has lots of color variation, mimicking the dappled effects of the light on the seals
For me, letting go of the literal imagery of the photo was a challenge. I wanted to create seals and rocks! It was hard to let go of that and I know that no one else will see the seals on the rock in this hat, but when I look at it, I remember the source for the color combination and I can see the seals.