VINTAGE CARAVAN SEWING MACHINE COVER UPDATE : I now have a draft pattern drawn up. I need to write up some instructions and, assuming this all goes to plan, I will make the pattern available during the week beginning 7th April 2014 :)

Monday, March 4, 2013

Long Enough?

The Long Man of Wilmington situated on the South Downs,Sussex

This is the Long man of Wilmington. The photo is from Wikipedia. He is the tallest chalk figure in the UK - 235 feet high - and you can find him on Windover Hill in the South Downs, close to where I live. He pretty much ruined my Sunday - although that wasn't his fault.

For the 5" x 7" Challenge, I ended up making this...


...I made him using reverse applique and, although I did quite like the idea that cutting away the green top fabric had an echo of carving away the grass to reveal the chalk beneath, I made him not because I was inspired by the giant or wanted to recreate the image in fabric but because I felt I had make something 7" x 5" because I had agreed to make an art piece this size every week for a year.

And to be honest it was a chore. For various reasons, including two funerals, I have very little sewing time this week and I could have spent that time much more happily and productively sewing one of the many things I want to make or at least to get finished. And I'm questioning whether I really want to keep going with the 7 x 5. Whilst I like the challenge of making something more creative regularly and without worrying about whether it's 'good' or not, the scale of the 7 x 5 doesn't seem to allow for the sort of 'art' I want to make and I'm starting to resent the time and energy that's it's taking up.

So is this just a matter of pushing through the pain barrier? Or is it time to say enough is enough? 

Janine @ Rainbow Hare

13 comments :

  1. if you reduced your commitment to a 5x7 piece every two weeks, or even once a month, would that let you accomplish the artist goals you had for this project while letting up on the presure and allow you to still make other things you want to work on?

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  2. If it's becoming a chore, I say stop! I love the ones you've made, but if you're not enjoying it I would focus your energy on things you want to make.

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  3. The chalk man is pretty unique...although I get what your concern is for sure! I think once per month or once every other month should suffice right?

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  4. I don't think trying to force yourself to keep up with something that was intended as a way to invite more creativity into your life is a great choice. If it feels like a chore, it doesn't seem to be having the intended effect. Maybe you could loosen the rules for yourself. Commit to doing one purely creative and "unjudged" project a week or a month in general, maybe, instead of confining yourself to a particular size or format. And maybe having it be a less often thing would ease the resentment, too.

    It's entirely your decision. It's your creative energy and I think you should use it in ways that you enjoy!

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  5. I'm interested in your choice of words in your last paragraph! It's great to challenge yourself, and sometimes push on through tough times - tiredness and frustration and difficulty are fine but IMO pain is a sign that it's time to stop! Good for you for trying it, and it's not wimping out.

    Maybe pushing yourself to make something more regularly is a good and productive challenge for you, but it sounds like the size aspect is restricting rather than stretching you.

    The fact that you find it a chore that you resent and can see yourself being more happy and productive doing something else says it all!

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  6. It sounds like you're really not enjoying this challenge and I think it's time to either stop completely or reduce it to once a month or so...no point in doing something that makes you unhappy or stressed when it's supposed to be fun and what you do to relax!

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  7. I say give up too if it's becoming a chore!

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  8. If you are really not enjoying it Janine, quit whilst you are ahead and do something that you do enjoy. Having said that the items you have made for this have been lovely so maybe you are being too hard on yourself.

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  9. I really like the long man mini. Sorry it caused you grief, though. If you're feeling resentful, that probably means it's time to change, for the benefit of the creative process. Personally, I bristle when something that should be fun just feels like an obligation, although I have appreciated things from the other side once it's over. But yeah, life is short. Do what makes you happy, whenever possible!

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  10. why not a compromise? Like Allison said - one piece every 2 weeks, or even just one a month. Carefree creating should be carefree.

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  11. In my humble opinion, you can't really force art. If it's feeling like obligation, may be it's time to take a break and work on something that makes you happy.

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  12. Oh Janine, it was a good idea, but it's not working for you, so definitely go back to what you enjoy doing!

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