Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Fear of Commitment

I've been right iffy about commitment lately. No, my husband has nothing to worry about. I'm just a bit afraid for my art career, though.

Maybe it is because there are so many choices and ideas that I find it hard to stick to a project. I have no problem with this when I am working on a commission. I just experience this problem when working for myself. My wheels are constantly spinning deciding whether to chase a new idea every day or engage myself in a large series.

I recently finished cutting and laying out a "one-off" piece. Purples and browns. A few scraps fell together as I was making an attempt to clean up. Perhaps I should make a smaller piece with the same colors. Perhaps I should make several. Perhaps I should do a series.

I love to look at the painting-a-day blogs. I have thought about doing something similar. Certainly not a quilt a day, but maybe a small quilt per week. Something I could fit in among other projects. Could I keep up with this? For a year? 52 little quilts? Is this too big of a bite to chew? Is it far more than just a big bite? Would it be as daunting as I think it could be? Should I just start and if I fail, I fail? What if I get bored? Could I then just change my colors? Alter the content a bit? Just stop and get to work on something else? Should I treat it as a big deal or no big thing?

Sometimes I find decision making difficult.

Two pieces have been cut and laid out. A third is in the process. Should I just put out the statement that I am going to do a quilt a week and put them on Etsy and just get started? So far, the theme is singing birds. My musical choices have been limited to singing women. I didn't mean to imply that women are birds, but, well, the implication is there anyway. Perching like a little bird. A little singing bird. And I am going to go with it.

In my CD player I have: Patsy Cline, Norah Jones, Freakwater, Astrud Gilberto, and Gillian Welch. I'm looking for a few new musical ideas. Earthy women, not ethereal women. Talented women with beautiful voices whom you could imagine singing a lullaby to a child. My collection is quite limited. I'm looking for a few ideas. Please send me links or any other info. about your favorite female singers and musicians.

The more help I get, the longer this series may be.


paula said...

kim, I have to say that committing to doing a series has been invaluable for me, making it large (the 100 clocks) has allowed me time to grow and develop in ways I know for a fact I wouldn't have otherwise.(perhaps a decade later)
The small series of 10 clocks I recently did was a completely different exercise which I am continuing, feels good to have multiples. You can always give it a break and do one unique piece here and there. yes?
no recommend on women, i listen to really abstract music online :(

Fibra Artysta said...

Kim -

Have you ever seen Jeanne Williamson's website? She does the weekly exercises like you were discussing. Here is a link:

She posts new ones on her blog each week, its really fascinating to watch how her work is developing.

I think starting small for a series is the best place to start. I started with my Where I Stand photos, never really thinking it would last so long and its become the inspiration for so many other things.

I was never really into series work before but I have changed my mind on it. I think it really helps build confidence and its very satisfying to watch as the collection grows.

Go for it!

Ellen said...

I've become a bird nerd so I love the idea of a series of small quilts on singing birds. Coincidently, I've been listing to Kate Bush's 'Aerial' lately, while I work. I didn't like it the first few listens, but love it now, the second CD is a series of songs flowing together and birds figure prominently.

Wouldn't it be nice if there was something like an artist boot camp? They'd lock you in a room with no distractions and a preselected collection of materials, give you a theme and threaten you horribly if you don't finish something by the end of the day. Then you stop questioning everything and just do. I've tried to be my own drill sergeant, but I don't take myself seriously enough. You should watch Barry Schwartz talk on TED, on the paradox of choice, it's relevant to what you mentioned-

Anonymous said...

Check out Nico Case - strong woman with an intoxicating, natural voice.

Tracy Helgeson said...

You might want to check out Alice Peacock, Kathleen Edwards, Catie Curtis, and I always suggest the album Trouble by Ray LaMontagne, Not a girl, I know, but very earthy and passionate.