Thursday, January 2, 2014

Don't Worry, Be Happy! Philosophy for the New Year

"Off With Her Head"

 When my son goes back to school on Monday I am hoping to get back into my studio to get started on my next project which I have been putting off for weeks.  I have some deadlines to meet and need to get certain pieces done and I'm finding it hard to get myself into my studio.  I have done some tidying up in there and can now see my work surface, but I am still procrastinating and avoiding getting back into the swing of creating.  

I am not very worried as I know that once I get in there I won't be able to stop as I do have some ideas and I have some great, exciting fabrics to work with.  I've been sketching away in my sketchbook to come up with a 7"x10" piece for the SAQA Trunk Show that is due to them by the end of the month.  I have a couple of great ideas, although they will take some time so I really need to get going on them!  I can work rather fast when I am inspired, so again, I'm not worried!

Inspiration comes and goes and sometimes it is hard to know what you want to do next because an exciting idea is alluding you.  Nothing hits you as being the next great artwork.   Well, when this kind of artist's block hits me I just plunge in and start doing SOMETHING because that is so much better than NOTHING and it does get your juices flowing---no matter what it is.  That's when I like to do one of my Strata quilts which are simple piecing and it is fun just playing with arranging and rearranging the fabrics to come up with a nice composition.  Doing something like this that isn't difficult or too challenging gets you back into the swing of things in a kinder, gentler way!!  Do something small and not too difficult.  You'll start getting ideas for what you want to do next all the while you are working on it!

This year I have a new printer set up for wireless printing from my laptop which is what I do all my business and computer work on.  I used to have to power up our old computer and print things from it which was hit or miss whether it would cooperate as it is old and tired.  Now I can print, copy, scan---all that good stuff, right here from my laptop.  Now if we can only just get into the 21st century and get a high speed connection instead of dial-up (I know, I know, does ANYONE have dial-up anymore---pick me!).  We are working on that too and hopefully within the next month or it will happen.  How exciting that will be for many things I have to do on my computer.  Like these blog posts for instance.  Uploading photos is time consuming with dial-up.  I'll be able to upload the high resolution images when I do quilt/fiber show entries instead of running to the library to do it!  Even looking at blogs and websites of other fiber artists is a chore with dial-up.  Checking my e-mail takes forever just to load and move through the messages because of the slow connection.  The cost of the high speed internet will definitely be worth it for all the time it saves me.  That is if I can keep myself from spending all day looking at all your blogs and websites!!

This year I am going to increase my efforts in both writing and teaching.  I am working on scheduling another Strata class in Missoula and I've been pondering a couple of other classes that I might work up outlines for.  I have some articles that I need to finalize and figure out where to submit them.  Finding the right publication has proven to be challenging.  I am moving on and looking forward to some positive days and months ahead.  This funk is over and I'm looking forward to working hard this year at making my business and artistic endeavors successful and profitable.  These are fairly new activities for me so I still find them a bit daunting and I'm a little nervous about how well I will do with them.   I've had good luck so far and am hoping that continues.

Ups and downs are what makes life interesting and even though I am a very positive, glass-half-full kind of person I do have my occasional downs.  Disappointments and feeling unsupported take all the fun and inspiration out of being an artist sometimes.  You have to learn to create for yourself and get your art out there because you want to share it with whoever is interested.  If that isn't who you hoped would be interested there isn't much you can do about that!  Just appreciate whatever support you do get, and don't take any of it for granted.  I am fortunate to have parents who are very supportive of my artistic and business endeavors and very encouraging to me.  As artists themselves they understand much of what I feel and want with this pursuit, and they offer suggestions and ideas and listen to my rants and dreams.  

I wish you much inspiration and a strong creative spirit for this brand new year, and I hope that you find your way with whatever you are doing artistically.  Don't give up on your ideas.  Search out the resources and support that will help you move ahead and just enjoy what you are doing, creating, and planning for your future.  Whether that is the project you are going to do tomorrow, or the exhibition you are going to try to get into next month, or the new direction you hope to take next year, go forth with a positive spirit and joy.  Art is supposed to give us joy and thoughtfulness and invoke feelings.  We do it because we like to do it.  So like it.  Be inspired.  Be creative.  Be an artist.  

So philosophical!  Next post will be lighter and have more pictures---so do come back!!
Happy New Year!
"Off With Her Head" - detail image (round items are pennies)

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