It's now early evening and very dark on this last day of 2011. I've been pondering how I will summarize this year; this is what I wrote on my SAQA Visioning Project page, earlier this afternoon:
- There was learning, and lots of it:
- About my abilities;
- About my limits;
- About my values;
- About my dreams.
- There were boosts to my confidence in the above areas -- and there were moments when I was brought up sharply to face what I really want for my life, versus the expectations of others;
- There's been a return to what is most important to me;
- There is a polishing of skills that is ongoing.
- There was my first quasi-solo show, with very modest success. (My daughter is keen that I do this again so we can share a booth!)
- There was the wonderful Denver Conference trip, where I met so many of Visioning Project members, learned so much, took in so much, enjoyed so much...
- There's a sketchbook full of ideas to bring to life in textiles; and
- There is a new health challenge. Though down 8 pounds since a year ago, due to improved nutrition and exercise (returning to my old ways as a long, slow distance runner, last seriously practiced in my early 40s), and feeling better than I have in years, I am facing hypertension...and working on alleviating it without medication.
At this time of the year, like so many of you, I make lists...and there is a great temptation to be overwhelmed by them! However, I am trying to keep it simple -- and not to plunge into new work right away. I will begin January by sorting and cleaning the studio (again, I know I'm not alone in this!) so that I can see where I am going. I have an idea...but I need to see the projects -- like ducks -- all lined up in a row.
First, the "Finishes":
|"Stardust" - detail|
- Finish the mystery quilt top (the quilting will come later), which has been a great holiday-time exercise for me. It kept me in the studio; it held me accountable for my piecing and sewing skills; it taught me more about colour and value -- even with 'neutrals' like black and white....
- Finish Activity 4 in my Module 5 of the C&G program, mounting the sample on a quilted background (a quilt on a quilt) for hanging.
- Finish two art quilt WIPs:
- "I Was Hungry"; and
- "Abandoned #2".
Next, the "Starts":
- Move on to Activity 5 of the C&G Module 5, in which I research a traditional quilt block, skew it in some fashion, and design a quilted piece with it.
- "Abandoned #3";
- A Knitted Garden;
- Two banners based on Canticles in the Anglican Church of Canada's Book of Alternative Services;
- "Sentinels" and "The Watchers on the Road" from photos taken on a retreat in southern Alberta in 2010.
There is a question of shows. I have a piece that I think will suit for the SAQA Benefit Auction 2012, so I'm alright there. The Focus on Fibre Arts Association Biennial show for 2012 has a theme that doesn't touch my heart. Ditto for an upcoming Quilting Arts reader challenge. I think I am going to continue to 'pass' on these things and focus on the Lacombe show in April, and on what I've lined up.
That, and losing another 15 pounds, increasing my running to an hour at a stretch, and lowering my BP. If I don't regain my health (despite how good I feel and how misleading this is!), none of the rest will amount to a hill of beans.
"Stop, study, serve" remains my mantra for the new year. I welcome all who want to journey along, and thank you, gentle readers, for your gifts of wisdom, inspiration and friendship in the past year.
Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and days of auld lang syne?
For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne --
We'll take a cup o' kindness yet
For auld lang syne.
- Robert Burns
Happy New Year!