So. I found myself faced with the question of 'what to do?'.
I sat down with a piece of paper and wrote down all of the creative pots I have had my mitts in over the last year. Then I created lists. How much do I really like engaging in the art? How much is it costing me? Are the materials readily available or am I spending more time looking for things then actually creating? Which of my many indulgences really held my interest and ultimately the interest of others as I put my work out there for others to look at and possibly purchase? Those questions and others I asked myself, compiled the lists and then looked for trends.
What did I discover? Cross stitch and needlework designing (no surprise there!) topped all my lists as #1, and I can say without any doubt, I am a needlework designer.
I made the decision going into this that I was going to whittle things down to cross stitch and one other handcraft. What I found as I sifted through my 'data' was that crochet came in right behind cross stitch. I have recently found myself very fond of cotton yarn, and have made the decision to try and work with as much of it as I can.
I love natural materials, and recycling and repurposing are very big in my artwork. But, finding suitable materials has been very hard lately and I found myself falling into that 'it takes more time to find the stuff then make the art' category again. I will still make my regular trips to the thrift shops. Treasure hunting brings me joy. But I am not going to fill up my house with bits of stuff that may or may not find way into my work. If I purchase it, it is going to have an immediate purpose. I need to get back to listening to the inner voice again.
I have three craft shows coming up. I have worked all the remaining hand-plied art yarn into scarves and hats, and the other things I have in my Etsy shop will be going with me to the shows. Fuzzy Stitches will soon be phased out, and once I have created some new pieces Hooked On Cotton will open. I am hoping that this paring down and weeding out will help bring me focus again. Trust that I will still be looking and oohing and ahhing over things that I would love to try. I just plan on trying to reel in those impulsive tendencies to go and buy all the things I need to try it.
Look! You can see the dining room table! That in itself indicates that I am quite serious about bringing my focus in as the table has always served as a catch-all for everything creative.
This is the first all cotton free-form crochet scarf I am working on. I need to pick up one more skein of this yarn. It is the I Love This Cotton variety from Hobby Lobby.
I just registered for spring semester classes as well, and am just tickled. The class schedule will allow me to really dig into my new position as program director with Watch Me Draw and still give me lots of studio time for classes and my artwork outside of class. The classes? My second intermediate painting class (which should be interesting as I had the FIRST of the intermediate classes in 1987!!), drawing, beginning sculpture and ancient art history.
Oh! And with the encouragement of a dear friend, I decided to revisit my love of writing, and am giving the National Novel Writing Month a go. A month of writing, trying to achieve the goal of 50,000 words in 30 days. You can follow me over here to see how I am progressing! Hawthorn