Wednesday, 17 July 2013

My Project - or the elephant's coat


16th July 2013

New Year started with me making a resolution for the first time for decades, I was not going to buy any new materials or tools unless they were vital to a special project.  My family were delighted to hear this as they have been living in dread of the attic, otherwise known as my chaotic warehouse, collapsing on top of them.
For the first time for years I have not had an exhibition deadline to work to and, as a result have let my weaving take a back seat as family matters call on my attention. My mother is increasingly frail being blind and deaf she has little stimulation added to that she has Parkinson’s Disease.  I have taken a rag rug I have been working on to Mum’s flat so I can keep my fingers busy while we sit and reminisce. I feel as if I am banking comfort memories for when Mum finally has peace.
However, I am feeling dry, not even enjoying visiting exhibitions, it finally dawned on me I haven’t touched the loom I warped up for over a year ago.  Worse still I have been using it as a storage area covering it with ephemera/detritus/’when I get round to it’ work.  I had an epiphany when I went guiltily into my abandoned workroom; this poor, dusty, lonely loom was the missing well for me to slake my creative thirst.  Yet, I had no design in my head or on paper. Finally I was intent on weaving so did not want to distract myself from starting by sidetracking myself into designing a cartoon.
This was the beginning of a project which is proving both freeing and constricting at the same time. At this early stage I have no idea what will result from this dichotomy, it is exciting.
The warp had been left stretched and some of the strands had been pushed aside by the piles of mending (some of which I have done, the rest has been hidden more successfully so that I can start on My Project – it feels as if this adventure needs capital letters). Did I undo the knots and even the warp? No, I wanted to weave. My head said go back and retie the warp, my fingers said no.  I didn’t even listen to my head I started to weave some waste to space the warp and to get back into a rhythm.  This, not surprisingly showed me how uneven the warp had become. It didn’t feel that bad when I eagerly began.  I decided that this was part and parcel of My Project.  I had set rules:
1.      No new yarn to be bought, scraps to be used first
2.      No over dyeing to link in colours
3.      No preparation
4.      No over thinking
5.      Be as intuitive as possible
6.      Above all PLAY, in fact work hard at playing.
7.      Don’t fret, don’t sweat it
8.      Don’t take notes as I go in order to ‘balance out the design’

                         Bye for now.
                         
                           Deborah




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