Archive for the ‘Artist Angst’ Category


I’ve put these two aside and am calling them finished – at least for now.  They are on 12×12 (ish) pressed board.  Cold wax and oils.  No enhancement other than cropping.

My painting experiment continues but I must be honest….I wouldn’t say it has taken priority.  I found myself totally focused on making a back for my One Hot Mess quilt top.  The back possibly took more time than the front did.

So, the front is a Victoria Findlay Wolfe pattern with a little bit of crumb piecing.  The back is totally improv.  Improv lettering and crumb piecing.  It was a bugger of a piece to get straight but I think I have it straight (enough).

I’m planning to keep the curved edges on the top.

Warning….back includes my favorite cuss word.  To be fair, I don’t use it A LOT…but it does cross my lips occasionally.



And, thanks to Mr. W, I am typing on a new MacBook Pro 13″  I LOVE LOVE LOVE it!  No more instability and crashes.

Now, back to painting….at least until the end of the month.  Jury is still out on whether I will continue with my painting adventure or put it aside at the end of the month.  I know so little about painting…I don’t know how to mix colors….I don’t know how to make marks….I actually know so little about painting and it is quite intimidating.  It’s certainly easier to do what you know rather than something you know so little about.



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I have decided to take a semi-sabbatical from quilting.  I’m not planning to full on QUIT quilting, but I’m going to put it in the backseat and put painting in the front seat.  For the month of September at least.

Years ago, I took a workshop on cold wax painting.  I wasn’t crazy about the workshop (the teacher was distracted, jet lagged and not attentive at all) but I did like some of my results.  However,  I never went any further with it other than to put my paintings up and admire them occasionally.

I have been following the work/art of Rebecca Crowell for well over 5 years.  Dreaming of painting in that style.  About 2 years ago, she came out with a book with Jerry McLaughlin.  They crowd funded it.  Over the last two years, I’ve sat in my chair and read and re-read their book.  Dreaming.  Now they have video teaching available.  I would love to invest in the video, but here’s the thing….I’m still just DREAMING.  And, it is an expensive video (although a LOT cheaper than going to one of their workshops).  I have yet to mix cold wax and oil together and put it on canvas or paper so it is hard to justify the purchase.  But….that is going to change.

September 2019….I deem COLD WAX PAINTING MONTH.

(5 day pause)

ok, so it is now September 4th.  My plan/goal is to paint daily for the month of September and then evaluate whether I want to continue painting or not.  So far, I’ve painted 3 of 4 days.  I do enjoy it.  It only ‘takes’ about an hour of my time though before I’ve run out of ideas and painting substrates so then I switch over to quilting.

My question at the end of my painting session today was “How do you know when to quit?  How do you know when a painting is done?”  Especially with abstract painting….it’s not like I’m trying to paint a tree or a house or something specific.  So…..how DO you know when to quit?  I’ll get back to you on that one if/when I figure it out.

I’ll post picture of my painting throughout the month.  I’m not looking for critique.  I might even shut off comments if I can figure out how to!  I really just want to paint because I want to paint.  I want to suspend judgement on whether it is good or not.  I just want to paint because I enjoy it.  Not because I want to sell my stuff.  Not because I want to have a gallery show.  I really don’t want anything other than the joy of creating.  This, combined with my fear of sucking should prove to be interesting.

Pictures below are progress on “One Hot Mess”.  The top is finished – now I’m working on the words for the back.  “I like pretty things…and the word @*&$”.  🙂  (Sorry mom…lol)


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Mary Oliver died this week.  I have heard of her before but never was a follower.  I know I’ve read some of her works, but I never really FELT it.  Plus, I’ve never been a ‘poemy’ sort of person…most poems I read and think to myself….”ehhhhh….whatever”.  I’m more a “tell me what you want me to hear and I’ll deal with it” kind of person.  (K2 always says she doesn’t do ‘subtle’ and I think that’s what most poetry is.)

However, so many people have been posting Mary Oliver quotes this week that I’ve become intrigued.  (Similar to Leonard Cohen.  I was a late lover of his music having only discovered him about 15 years ago in a yoga class.  Now I can’t get enough of him.)

It might be time for me to explore the work of Mary Oliver.  Even if I don’t really GET poetry.  It doesn’t appear as if her poetry is the sing-song rhyming variety….more thoughtfulness and reflection type poetry.  (Could you call it stream of consciousness?  Just blurting out what is going through your mind?  I’m not sure.)

This is the latest of her thoughts I’ve run across:

“You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.

You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.”
From Wild Geese by Mary Oliver

Elizabeth Berg, one of my favorite authors of all times, recently posted on her FB about walking out of a yoga class and then quitting her gym membership on the way out the door (her post is dated the 20th of January if you want to read it and all the thoughtful comments)…all without pre-thought or planning.  It resonated with me.

I have arrived at the time in my life where I can say no.  And I say no fairly frequently and (mostly) without guilt.  I can’t tell you how freeing it feels.

A friend asked me to join her in taking over the local reigns on a fairly large Aussie charity.  It is one of the three charities that I really love and generously support.  In the past, I would have said yes immediately.  Instead, I asked for details.

I’m not sure if I’ll say yes or no – but I will be comfortable saying no.  I no longer feel the need to be a front runner.  I KNOW I can be in charge and get things done, but I no longer want to be that person.  Let me sit in the back row and be a supporter.  I’m tired and I’m learning how to say no and I’m comfortable saying no.

That’s all.



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PG_0202-02WARNING:  This post contains EXPLICIT language.  Yes…..I use the “F” word frequently.  Mom (and Annabelle and anyone else who doesn’t like my colourful language)…..I’d suggest you refrain from reading as I know you don’t like it when I swear.

This is what I wrote to a friend yesterday:

It’s rainy today.  I’m over in the little house holed up.  Having a bit of an epiphany……always like it when that happens.  
I’ve decided that I no longer care how many WIP/UFOs I have.  Life is so frickin’ short that I’m only going to work on what I want to work on.  I don’t care (anymore) if I have a hundred UFOs when I can no longer quilt or when I exit this earth.  Really……who cares?  It’s not like I’m making quilts for anyone specific (except that retirement quilt for K3 and I’m waiting on him at this point to mail me more shirts).  
If I never finish another project – does it matter?  What?  One less quilt for a homeless person to curl up in?  What-the-fuck-ever.  They can go to Goodwill and get a Walmart blanket.  
From now on – I’m only going to work on what I want to work on – what I have a PASSION to work on.  Maybe it will be a UFO – but maybe it will be something new and exciting.  Or maybe it will be just sewing random strips of fabric together while I ponder the fuzz in my navel.  Or, maybe I’ll finally pull out the paints again and get moving in another direction.  
Who knows…..and really……who cares but me?  No one really gives a fuck about anyone else (creatively speaking).  Certainly no one gives a fuck about my creative ideas.  And, perhaps they really shouldn’t.  Perhaps  (creatively) it IS all about me, me, me.  And perhaps it should be that way.  I don’t know.  (And quite honestly…..today I don’t care.)
Anyway……after having these thoughts – I packed up a UFO that I had brewing on my design wall.  They were left over blocks from a mystery quilt.  I made double the blocks (no clue why) and so I felt like I needed to put them together into a quilt.  It was an unfinished project.  You MUST finish your projects, right?  Who’s voice is this anyway?  It’s time to shut the voice up and just do whatever the hell I want to do.
And so I did.  Yesterday, I did whatever-the-hell I wanted to do creatively.  And I’m going to do the same thing today.  This morning, at 3:30AM, I woke up thinking about the improv string scores I worked on yesterday.  Yesterday I was confused about how to proceed.  In the quiet early hours of morning – I had an idea and can’t wait to give it a try.
Now though, it time for yoga.  I have a new online workshop by J Brown.  So far I’m liking it.  His focus is breath centered yoga.  Slow, but certainly not easy.  Currently, I prefer online to live yoga classes.  I came to the realisation that although there are good (and great) yoga teachers out there – the local ones don’t offer me what I need and want.  I want hands-on teaching and guidance.
The only two teachers I ever REALLY have gotten that from was a Iyengar teacher by the name of Margee and a student teacher by the name of Kate.  Margee and I didn’t really hit it off well, but she was a great hands-on teacher.  Life got in the way of Kate and she no longer teaches.
Granted – I don’t get hands-on teaching from my online teachers either – but it is no different than teachers TELLING the class to do something but not specifying to which student they are directing that message to.  With body dysmorphia, how do I know if they are telling ME to adjust my pose or talking to the person next to me?  I’m not a mind reader.
Bottom line?  Right now, I prefer my own little yoga studio and my online options (YIN yoga with Ekhart Yoga being my current favourite).  I’m headed there now.

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I’m 100% caught up on the clues for the Bonnie Hunter 2015 Mystery quilt.  The proof is in the pictures.  HERE  is the link to Bonnie Hunter’s linkydinky post #3 so you can keep track of what all the other quilters are doing.  There are some gorgeous quilts developing!


Now for some general quilt talk…..

I’m pretty sure I’ve done all the finishing that I’ll be doing for 2015 so it’s time to reflect on what I’ve made and also to look forward to 2016.  I suppose it’s just semantics but sometimes semantics are important.  Perspective matters.  Words matter.  So, what am I talking about?  Well, I’m thinking about the difference between a UFO (unfinished object) and a WIP (work in progress).

I seriously don’t think I have any UFOs any longer.  (I KNOW, seriously????)  I no longer have any projects half finished and waiting to be finished.  For several years now I’ve been plugging along to finish them up – and I think I’m there.

Now, WIPs are a different kettle of fish.  I have 11 WIPs that I can account for right now.

My list:

Brother’s and Sister’s – needs batting, basting and big stitch quilting
LogOLight2 – finish piecing, maybe do some embroidery? FMQ
Gypsy Wife 2 – I made a 2nd set of blocks – now to decide what to do with them
Tumbler baby quilt – finish piecing, pin baste, FMQ
K3’s quilt – design and piece
K2’s quilt – FMQ
Fabric Vomit Crumbs – design and piece
1990’s Retro Crumbs – design and piece
The Circle Games – keep plugging along with hand piecing
Magnolia Wool – whip stitch, embroidery embellishment?
BH Mystery/Allietare – piece, baste, FMQ
I think 10-12 WIPs is about the right number.  It gives me something to do in most every stage of quilting so I can bounce back and forth.  I have 2-3 TV projects, a couple piecing projects, a couple designing projects, a couple leader/enders and 1-2 FMQ projects.  Keeps my crafty ADHD at bay to be able to bounce back and forth.

I’m also kicking around the idea of a quilting focus for 2016.  I’m thinking to once and for all tackle and CONQUER FMQ doodling.  I’m sick of WANTING to do it but not doing it.  Time to get over my fear – get over your damn self Princess – and just do it.  Figure if I give myself an assignment – 15 minutes a day or 2 days a week or something – I’ll be more apt to dive in and learn.

Do you have any quilt related goals for 2016 or is it too early to be thinking about it just yet?


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