Friday, January 15, 2010

Digitized Shibori

One of my off and on love affairs of late has been Spoonflower. I love it because it is so easy to use, I hate it because--um, well it is so easy to use. I have had fun just cranking out designs and playing with the repeats of them. Honestly some of them are crap. I have also been playing around with Photoshopping some of my shibori samples. It makes me feel unclean to do this to my shibori. Shibori is done by hand, it is a careful zen like process. Here I am playing with it in Photoshop. It almost feels sacrilegious. Spoonflower is like my dirty little addiction.

I have to say some other designers have beautiful work on there that I covet and admire. There is also a lot of crap (my own included, so please, no hate mail.) Recent discussions on Slow Cloth have me thinking more about why I am doing things, what I am learning, and what I am contributing. The good, the bad, and the sometimes ugly. Is it okay to make ugly art if you learn and grow from it? Is it okay to share your ugly work? Or should ugly work be banished and hidden or even destroyed? Should I delete my Spoonflower designs that just did not quite work, or should I keep reworking them?

I took the plunge and ordered more swatches of designs I had previously done on Spoonflower. Time to decide to keep or eliminate. I also need to make a decision about what to make with these designs. I am thinking of upholstering a chair and painting the wood in bright colors?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Slow Cloth

Slow Cloth is a group started on Facebook for discussing the idea of Slow Cloth. Started by three wonderful, thoughtful artists--Elaine, Jude and Glennis. Anyone interested in textiles and what they mean in today's world should check out the discussions going on over there. The group is new, is growing, and is very active.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

On with the New Year

So what does 2010 have in store? I have had lots of down time with the hand to start planning and thinking about projects for this year. I have been doing some soul searching and asking myself questions. Do I do projects for recognition or for personal pleasure? Do I try to do lots of small things for instant gratification or do I go for one really great big project? Do I try to teach and share or just selfishly do my own thing? What has been holding me back from getting things done? How do I get myself organized to accomplish my goals once I set them?

One thing I have learned, is that it does help to set goals and to actually write them down. Writing them down is like making a promise to yourself--if it is important enough to write down it must be something important to you--right? A great site for helping to plan and organize is I love the templates directory and have even contributed a few myself. A simple dayplanner and a simple weekly planner and my DIY Voodoo Kit. The latter is just for fun. DIY Planner has some great contributors and I enjoy reading the articles on getting organized and how people share their creative answers for getting organized. I wish I could make an organizer system for artists, but what works for one would not for another so I just need to finish making the one I started for myself.

So let's see, back to goal setting... I want to test out my ideas for the dress I am going to make for my niece using kakishibui and indigo. I want to make a bib necklace using the awesome retro beads I found on Etsy. I want to get my shibori videos finished. I want to get my plan for my Japan trip in place. I want to get a better list of Japanese sewing term translations organized and posted. I want to sew my way through the rest of my Japanese sewing books. I want to get my Etsy shop going. I want to get my Spoonflower fabrics tweaked for better colors and make something using my own fabric. I want to experiment more with katazome (rice paste resist dyeing.)

Well I feel better putting that down. It did make me think about what was more important to me. Now I have some focus for the year. Two weeks until the pins come out. I better print out a calendar and start some planning on paper!

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Hand Progress

Here is my x-ray from the day my cast came off. Kind of creepy, but not so gross as looking at my actual hand. I now have twenty three days until those pins come out and then will do rehab on my finger for a while to get my grip back. I am doing my flexes every hour like I am supposed to. I have got a little more bend back into the middle knuckle joint. The progress seems so slow right now. Hydrocodine and I do not get along! I am just taking ibuprofen now.

The pins get cold fast and the weather here in Indiana has been COLD. It is a weird feeling in my finger joint where the pins are when they get cold--bone chilling has new meaning for me now.

I am wondering if picking up being left-handed will make me smarter by forcing me to use the right side of my brain more? LOL, probably not. Simple things have been easy to pick up on doing left handed--like eating, typing one handed, and other simple tasks. Harder is fastening hooks and zippers on clothing, writing (I can do it but the angle is all wrong), and opening those dang child proof caps they put on everything. Oh yeah--and scissors! Scissors left handed takes some concentration. I have only a small understanding of what stroke victims go through.

I have to admit that fear creeps in now and again at this point. What if it does not heal correctly? What if it does not have enough grip ever again? What if it does not fuse? What if it hurts all the time? What if I can't do my art or have to relearn how to do my art? I guess I am just a little depressed right now. I know I need to think positive healing thoughts!