I was true to my word and spent some time this week making a paper sample for a new piece.
I'm actually relatively pleased with it, however, paper does not have the same transparency as some of the materials that I plan on using (mainly organza), but it has still given me an idea of what it might look like when I am finished.
I am still trying to make decisions on final size, but I like that it is long, rather than wide. However, I am not sure that I want the piece to be horizontal, and this particular composition does not lend itself well to being hung vertically.
So, I want to do one more sample and re-arrange some elements to see if I can create a vertical composition along the same lines. That is going to be my goal for the next week.
Ill be quite honest, I haven't done much work this week.
Things have been crazy at school and I feel like I have been running around like a chicken with my head cut off. And to top it all off, I managed to catch a cold over the weekend, so I feel like someone has stuffed cotton balls in my face.
I have been doing a lot of thinking, even though I don't have anything tangible to show for it. Mostly I've been thinking about how large I want to make the pieces I have planned out. Part of me wants to go back to making larger works, but as of right now I have no place to store them. I'm just not sure how well what I have planned will read as a larger piece, although I am afraid that the same plan would make a smaller piece feel cluttered. On the other hand, a small, highly detailed work would take more time, but if executed correctly, could be stunning.
I'm also undecided with composition. I have so many ideas running through my head that I can't settle on just one. And unfortunately, my indecision on composition is tied to my indecision about size, so my mind keeps turning in circles.
I have to make a decision soon though. I found an opportunity for a show and entries are due in mid-March. It'd be great to have something ready by then.
I think that I am going to take some time this week and make small paper samples to determine if my plans are doable or not. Of course, then it may be back to the drawing board, but such is life.
As we are well into the new year, I have spent some time thinking about the work that I want to make this coming year.
I did a poor job making work last year, and even though I felt that I had some good ideas, the stuff that did get done, I do not feel was done to my fullest potential. I think part of the problem is that I was over thinking it and forcing it to be something that it did not want to be. Coming off something like The Phenomenology of Impairment, I felt that I had to find a way to out-do myself: build upon it's success and create something even better.
I think that level of stress really inhibited my work. I've found that I do not have to do something more prolific than that, at least not right now. I also think that I was trying to work with emotions that I just wasn't feeling anymore. The Phenomenology of Impairment was associated with so much tension and sadness and a feeling of being generally lost and I just haven't been feeling that.
Over the past year, I've felt like I was just existing: going from one day to the next without any strong emotions. It wasn't a feeling of being lost and it wasn't a feeling of sadness, it was just a feeling of being, but not necessarily living.
Over the past couple of months though, I have actually started living and I am the happiest that I have been in a very long time. Having someone in your life that loves you unconditionally for who you are, and feeling the same way about that person, can really change you perspective on life.
So I'm feeling good. And I'm feeling motivated. And I'm feeling inspired.
I think that I know the direction that I want to go too. I want to go back to collaging and weaving: the things that I was doing when I first started in textiles. They are things that I love, and frankly, things that I miss. And I want to continue to work with the magpie/bird imagery that I was toying with last year, but instead of having the magpie represent two parts of me (the sad and the not sad), I want it to represent two different me's (the lost and the found). I think that it is a good place to start, and if everything works out the way that I have planned, I think that it is going to lead to some good work.
It took me a little bit longer than I expected, but I am finally done weaving the scarf that I started.
I really like the way that it turned out. I was really nervous when I started it that the colors would not work together at all and it would come out looking a muddy brown, but it really doesn't. I'm going to give it to a lady that works with my mother since the colors I used are her favorite colors.
I am also working on sketches for a new collage. Will update with details soon!
It snowed here this past weekend so I had a couple of days off of school to actually do some of my own work.
I did finally decide to take out that weaving and fix the tension issues. Taking it out took a good couple of hours, but I got that done, got it tied back on the loom, and have re-woven about half of what I had to take out. I'm so glad I went this route. It looks a hundred times better and I am really looking forward to completing it.
I still hope to have it done by the end of the week.
I've spent a lot of time thinking over the past couple of days about my goals for this year.
I think what brought on this bout of thinking was, strangely enough, taking my bookcases apart so I could paint them. In one of the drawers I found some old wedding pictures and it struck me that, at this point in time, it feels like a completely different life even though it was only a few years ago.
And that's when I decided that I want to do everything that I can to start over and begin a new life. So I began by thowing those pictures away.
Then I had my fake nails removed.
I want to do everything that I can to erase that part of me: painting and replacing furniture, getting back into my art, switching back to glasses...I don't know. It seems a bit silly to me, some of those things, but I want to start my life again and make it a better one.
It's a new year, and I couldn't be more thankful.
Overall 2016 was a rough year. It was just full of unnecessary stress that I didn't need, though it did end on a more positive note than it began. I enjoyed the short break from work that I got. I spent all but two days with my boyfriend and it was just really nice, though admittedly not productive.
Refelcting back, I accomplished some of my goals for last year: I bought a car and a loom. But, I did not do so well with regards to producing work, which I am a little embarassed about, but it's really hard to keep life from getting in the way sometimes. That's one thing that I want to work on this coming year: pushing myself to get stuff done even when I have absolutely zero motivation.
That will help me actually make work. I think I said at one point that my goal for last year was to produce 12 pieces. I think I managed three with a fourth in progress, so not quite a third of the way to that goal. I think half of that would be a reasonable goal for this coming year (because I can already tell that at least the first half is going to be crazy with work) and because some of the things I've been toying with in my mind are going to be a little more in depth.
With regards to the weaving that I started, I'm about half way through, but there is a small area at the beginning where I was having a tension issue. I am almost positive I could fix it after it comes off the loom, but I was laying in bed thinking about it last night, I may just rip out the weaving that I have done so far and re-weave it. I have enough weft yarn to get through it if I do. I just want it to be perfect because I am really liking the color combinations. I wasn't sure that I would because the scarf will be predominantly orange with a lime green weft, but it is weaving up beautifully.
No matter whether I continue with what I have or start fresh, I plan on having done by the end of next week.
I am really proud of myself this week! I have actually managed to get started on my scarf!
This week has been exam week at school, so I have had a little bit of free time to get some stuff done. Plus, I have a nice big long table at work, so it has been really easy for me to spread out my stuff and wind my warp and my weft. I decided to use the rayon yarn that I had left over from when I was still in college just because I really like the way that it dyes and handles. I was actually unsure if I was going to have enough as I only had two partial cones, but miraculously, I had enough for the scarf and I still have a little bit left over. It's not enough to make anything out of but still. Regardless, I am going to need to order more.
I also managed to get my weft dyed and I love the way the green turned out!
The warp has yet to be dyed. I'm hoping to get to it either tonight or tomorrow. I know that I want it to be blue and orange, but I am still kind of undecided as to what shades of blue and orange I want it to be. I think what I might due is mix my dyes tonight and then dye it tomorrow.
You would think all of the swatches that I have would help make my decision easier, but the truth of the matter is that I think it makes it more difficult!
I haven't had a very productive week. In all honesty, I've been running around like a crazy person. Things just keep popping up at work and at home and I haven't had any time to anything extra. So the warp and weft for my scarf are still not prepared and the way that things are going, they are not going to get done before next week. But, school is done for the semester next Tuesday, so after that, I will, or at least should, have some time to get more stuff done.
However, despite my lack of time to physically do anything, I have had some time to think about some things. I'm beginning to think more about a new body of work. The stuff that I have been doing just didn't make me feel like I was challenging myself and I wasn't super excited by it, but I think I have an idea of some things that will and I have some preliminary ideas in my head that I need to get out on paper. I know that I do want to work with bird imagery and bring in the watercolor on silk that I have been working with. But, I also know that I want to bring in hand embroidery and I'd love to bring in natural dyeing. However, I need to do more research in that particular area, especially because I predominantly want to work with black and white and as of right now, I am not sure what dye I could use to achieve a black or blackish color. I also really don't want to work with harsh mordant to achieve the color. It's just not something I'm interested in, but again, I need to do more research. Any tips would be appreciated.
And, I do have some good news! I have been hired as an adjunct instructor by Wayne Community College and will be teaching a section of Art Appreciation in the spring. I am really excited because teaching at the college level is one of the things that I would like to do one day and I feel like this is a step in the right direction.
I think that I have decided that the best way for me to get back into a groove is to start out doing something just for fun. So, I've decided that I am going to weave a scarf.
The next couple of days for me are going to be pretty busy, so I don't know if I will actually get to any weaving this weekend. But, I plan to get the warp wound and dyed on Monday.
I'm kind of excited! I was given this cone of nice cotton yarn and I think that is what I plan on using (if I have enough. If not, I will just use rayon). Also, I haven't gotten my floor loom quite set up, so I am going to use my table loom for this one, but I got the back beam fixed, so it should no longer keep popping off when I wind the warp forward.