Friday, June 14, 2013

A Work Day, or two....

Contrary to what many of my friends and family think, being an artist is sometimes nothing more than slogging W.O.R.K.

I have been spending this morning and yesterday doing a lot of that work. (Please note: while I could tell you that I am blogging on my coffee break right now, and it would be true, as I have an iced coffee here at my computer desk, in actuality, posting on this blog and doing various other computer tasks are also a part of my Work.)

I have been back and forth between the studio and my computer room both yesterday and today. I have enlarged a tapestry cartoon from a maquette. I have selected colors from the cartoon and have chosen yarns to correspond for the next tapestry (a huge and daunting task, no matter how often I do it!!!) I have gone through my yarn shelves and found what I have on hand for the next tapestry, and placed an order for what I don't have.

I have uploaded images to CaFE and entered two exhibits, one with fiber pieces, and the other with paintings.

I have pulled out acceptance letters and contracts from other exhibits and updated my calendar about when and where work is due.

It is not yet noon, and I am already tired, but I have miles to go before I sleep! I have several paintings to make corrections/finishes to because they are due at an exhibit by the end of this month, and the paint will have to dry before then. And I still have to tie the warp to the lower beam of the loom, and get a header woven, so I can begin the next tapestry.

It is also about time to pack and ship a couple of tapestries to the Coastal Fiberarts exhibit, but I believe that can wait until next week.

And also, as a side note, this is my day to clean the house, and it needs it pretty desperately! (But guess which task will get ignored if I run out of day before it is done?!)

The images I have posted here are related to the choosing of new yarns for my next tapestry. I designed the next tapestry both in the studio and at the computer, with the final image being in the computer. So I decided to try to do color swatches from the image to see if that would help me in making my yarn selections. I have been very inspired by the website, Design Seeds. I love getting their little bits of color palettes on FaceBook and Pinterest, like the one of the Eiffel Tower image above that they posted on FB yesterday. So that is what led me to make up the color swatch page at the top. I used the color selector in PhotoShop to pick the color from my image, then I 'painted' a swatch with that color. It really did help me isolate the colors from the image, and also, it helped me see that the colors were compatible. There are a couple of colors that look a bit out of place for the palette, but they are of very tiny areas, and will serve as contrast bits. It actually was a fairly successful way to choose my palette for this next piece, and I think it did help me be more efficient in the process. I will do it again. Plus, I have my swatch page, to help me pick the colors as I weave.

Of course, I still had to translate the colors from the page into yarn, but that is necessary, no matter what kind of maquette you are using, whether it is painted, sketched, a computer print-out, or just in your head.

Well, my coffee is gone, and I need to go back across the hall to the studio. Art IS work, after all.

Me, at age 2-3 (sign added in PhotoShop)


Kathe Todd-Hooker said...

This sounds so much like what I am supposed to be doing right now. Art is hard work that has nothing or little to do with weaving. I just finished my tea so I am also headed back to working on all the stuff one has to do before one can weave!
Cheers and all,

Mary said...

Thanks for that great info about using Photoshop! I will have to give it a try - when I get around to designing another tapestry.
As a beginner artist (I have come to it late in life) I am constantly surprised at how much work there is before you actually start making - and the making is the work you actually see in the end. Preparation is so important, as is the thinking. That can be happening while you are doing the dishes, sweeping the floor, walking the dog, etc. I was talking to someone lately about how difficult it is to price your work when you want to include all that thinking - you can't really price it in, or it is sometimes difficult to remember when you put in all that mental effort.
I shouldn't be surprised, I know how much preparation I put into my lessons as a teacher. I suppose I always used textiles as a sanity hobby and so I didn't put all that work in, and it was so different from my paid work that it didn't feel like work. If you know what I mean. I tended to use other people's designs more. Now I want to design my own but it is hard work - as you have said.