Saturday, 7 January 2012

A brand new year

Well, how wonderful is that, a brand new year? We had our first new year's eve without our Youngest at home - first time he's looked old enough to go out on the razz (shhh! he's legal next year - will I get arrested now? I didn't say he could...) Anyway a sign of time passing, so, so quickly.

We watched the local hotel's fireworks thru the open French windows, a foul night but the dog wanted to smell the wet air & didn't mind the noise a mile away. We decided the world was our oyster, & thought it terrifying, but exciting at the same time.

 cards from last weeks background

I've enjoyed reading  some resolutions, plans, promises here in blogworld. It was making my own committment 2 yrs ago that took me to making over 360 daily squares & then to a saleable piece of work each week last year, which was the only way I got a body of work ready for my first show in September.

My first promise to myself this year is to find more balance  - I still have a small body of work & plan to add to one or 2 of the different series, so I can afford the time to recreate my neglected garden, take more walks, not just because it's healthy but to explore this wonderful place we live in. I need more yoga time to unwind from the hunching over stitches or leaning over the painting table (not to mention the stiffness & tiredness caused by the day jobs!) If you take care of yourself first, you are more able to do all those things that you want, that's my excuse, anyway ;)

heart background

So each week I will be working towards our show in June, but not just a saleable collage a week, I may take 2 weeks ( or longer) to work on a large wall hanging. It might be a selection of textile jewellery or notebook covers. I may try some sketchbooks or accordian books - my friend's been telling me they're just up my street. I would love to learn to draw/paintsea birds like Claire Harkess look at the bird 4th pic along. I first saw her seagulls a few years ago at an exhibition in Plockton & I never thought I could be so moved by a simple seagull.

 heart cards

of course I need to keep the studio full, too. I want to make more scarves so the place feels warm. I used to decorate lampshades to go with the driftwood lamp bases we made. I've sold all the ones we had, why not make more just because the driftwood's run out?

squares background

Photographing these backgrounds & cards without getting them wet in the rain or muddy dropping them on the way is a nightmare - I use the greenhouse where there's some light & to get out of the wind but it in itself is full of mud! So, I plan to make a permanent space in the studio, up against the sunny back window where I just store stuff, with my trusty college tripod for the days there isn't any light - I mean, hardly a week went by in the last 2 years when I didn't take a photo. I could at least keep the things flat! I might also install a white roller blind in the greenhouse for bigger things but it would probably go green or be eaten by mice within 5 minutes!

Square cards

I've really enjoyed the freedom in these cards & collage backgrounds. This week seems to have been a card week but I found time to make a couple more samples from that wonderful book Stitches Straps & Layers by Maggie Grey.

This a sample using silk carrier rods split into a few layers, no mean feet with my broken nails! I chose to use  them flat (instead of wrapping them round the side/bottom of a piece) My sample is based on a pic in the book of a beautiful bag made by Anna Nowicki using 'flat knitting tapes' My interpretation of that is to use ribbon... maybe that's what it means ;) Have a look at her blog thru the link - she's doing amazing things with bits of thread...!

The next sample, above, was to use foiled grounds with needle felted things on top. The sample in the book had me & my arty buddies drooling so I've tried my best with my sample. The first 2 strips are machine & hand stitching & using the embellisher machine over the silk & the stitches. Then Maggie used sumptuous silk velvet ribbon & lightly felted it down. I've had a meter of this purple velvet ribbon for ages & finally I've used it! The next strip is a skeletized leaf under black organza - you needle felt all round the leaf then on the leaf for a bit distressing it as much or as little as you want. I don't think my fabric was sheer enough, but that's the whole point of having a sample book, of course. I missed out the lutrador bit & tried the puffed & purple painted scrim with an added bit of fabric (Maggies was purple) I had hard scrim to hand & just stitched it. The last strip is painted tissue paper & painted with acrylic wax AFTER embellishing to stregnthen. Well, I didn't read the instructions & used wax before felting - lovely holes in stiff paper! I love this learning lark, what would I have achieved I wonder if i'd loved learning at school? These little samples will look so lovely in my samples book; wish I could show my teachers.....

I'm sure I could go on about all I plan or want to do. Despite my schooling ( the best was done for me at the time!) or maybe because of my schooling (!) I find myself doing something I absolutely love, even tho I haven't managed earning a full time living yet, but I know I will never be bored in my life, there's always something exciting I can be doing (hence the yoga/balance thing!) I took time to join the Middlest & Youngest watching 'Coach Carter'  before the M went back to college & even tho I'd watched it before I hadn't remembered  the lovely quote from it - got to say I'm delighted that my teenagers so enjoy the uplifting family film - the basketball that they both play might have something to do with it. Anyway, here's the quote!

edit - this is the version by Marrianne Williamson from her book 'A Return to Love'. Coach Carter left out a few lines, I think.

Our Deepest Fear

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.

Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.

We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some; it is in everyone.

And, as we let our own light shine, we consciously give
other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.


Anonymous said...

Hello, you're back - did the weather affect you - I heard parts of Scotland had no power - or is that not an issue on Skye - do you generate your own. You work is fantastic by the way. Also you don't look old enough to have boozy offspring! ha ha

My Creative House said...

Happy New Year Emma, your backgrounds and the cards you made of them are fantastic, this is a very inspiring post, both samples looks wonderful, love your colors.
Hugs Anni

jinxxxygirl said...

I love that quote too. I just drop off the references to God and its perfect. Thanks for sharing i hadn't heard it in a while.

Suztats said...

Wonderful creations, Emma. Love the quote! I've read part of it before........"Your playing small does not serve the world...." by Anais Nin? I believe it to be true.

Robin Mac said...

What a wondrful post - Happy new Year to you. You talk about balance, but it seems to me you will be busier than ever, but oh, so creative. I love the cards you have made. I hadn't heard the quote before, thanks for sharing. Cheers

Carole Reid said...

Wonderful quote, gorgeous work, and the colours are a celebration of light! So glad we're blogland friends. Here's to you new year of creating.

Jan said...

All these new pieces are so colorful and pretty, I love what you are doing. What do you mean by cards? Cards one might write on and mail or give? Business cards?

That quote is a good one too, I might have to copy part of it down in my quote book. Thanks for sharing, hope your new year is going well. It appears so.

jan said...

Happy New Year to you and yours. Love all your backgrounds you've been doing, also lovely quote I've never heard it before...x

ju-north said...

Lovely work as always! and I love that quote!

Anonymous said...

Hi Emma, it's the type of scrim plasters use for ceiling roses - you can get it on ebay!

Maggi said...

The card backgrounds look wonderful. That's what samples are all about - learning. I'm sure that if they had let us learn through samples at school we would all have enjoyed our education more. I was reading Maggie's blog the other day and she was saying that it is almost impossible to earn a living just through the sale of textile art - teaching etc have to come into the equation so I guess that you are in good company.

bois-fleurie said...

I got up today feeling tired and lazy,reading you blog washed all that a way. before Christmas I did some yoga or danced every day but since then have done nothing very much. So I'm going this minute to get going again. Your work is a joy to see.


Heloise said...

Happy New Year to you and your family. Love all the colour. The cards look great. Enjoy all your creativity this year.

Unknown said...

Happy new year - love all the cards. Thanks for the lovely link too - your samples are very pretty

ArtPropelled said...

I was thinking about your daily squares this morning! Loving the heart cards and impressed with your plans for the year. I've always loved that quote. President Nelson Mandela used it in his inauguration speech and caused quite a stir. So many people needed to hear it.

Anonymous said...

I see your light shining brightly in all that you are doing. Love your balance in these pieces, letting your creativity guide you through each day. Hugs my friend, your 2012 will be brilliant. xox Corrine

Jill said...

May your light continue to shine - your energy in completing project is inspiring!

Art em Rosa said...

hi, i'm from Brazil and I loved your blog!! make me a visit later...

Dorothy said...

I read with interest your blog and really liked your work. The quote is inspiring and I plan to write it down to add to my book of quotes. Hope you have a wonderful. creative year.

Linda Stokes said...

Love all your colourful pieces Emma - Sounds like it will be another creative year for you - hope you manage the balance too.

Linda Vincent said... seem to have boundless energy Emma, I wish I could keep up with you! As always your blog is filled with masses of colour and inspiration.
I hope 2012 is a wonderful, successful year for you.

Emma said...
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Emma said...
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