Garrison Latimer has always had an overwhelming desire to create. An obsession with color and design coupled with a gift he received helped him develop a unique style in an unexpected medium.

That gift was a predesigned cross stitch kit with everything he would need to execute a traditional pattern: A pleasant border with a funny saying in the center. Two weeks into working on someone else’s design, Garrison got bored, grabbed some graph paper and started drawing his own concepts.

Inspired by abstract and OpArt artists such as Carlos Cruz-Diez and Bridget Riley, the color studies of Josef Albers, and Anni Albers’ textile designs, Garrison began exploring how to create something new using what is typically considered a craft rather than an art form.

It is the limitations of the medium that is most challenging and intriguing to the artist. Using nothing more than gridded fabric and colored thread, his style developed into one not typically seen in traditional cross stitch. Depth, gradient color work, and unique pattern design are typical of Garrison’s work along with strong attention to detail and precision in execution.

Garrison is entirely self-taught and views each piece as an experiment to try something new. He spends hours and hours drawing his patterns by hand in pencil and pen, his ideas of new techniques simply black and white lines on a page. He often has no idea if these techniques will work how until well into creating a new piece.

Color, patterns, and tricking the eye are hallmarks of Garrison’s work, but what isn’t always apparent is the 100+ hours that go into creating each piece.