Thursday, February 17, 2011

Threading Heddles





More progress on my Cross on a Hill project for Calvary Lutheran Church.  Here is a close up threads going through heddles.  There are 490 cotton threads and 245 silk threads for each panel.  There are 8 panels total. That's a lot of threads going through lots of heddle eyes!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Handspun Eggs in Raku nest

Modified cliche for the day: Artwork is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. Recently I declared that I am more interested in product development than in manufacturing. In other words, I am more excited about having ideas than in bringing them to world. Doing the work. That isn't a great formula for success. Unless I can  get other people to bring forth my ideas for me. 

In the fiber arts, which I know the most about, most ideas require repeated motions, by the thousands, to come to fruition.  This might be true of other media as well, but I can't think of any good examples.   It takes some will power to sit down at a loom, knowing that you are going to throw the shuttle and beat thousands of times before you can cut off your towel, or scarf. It takes inner strength to cast on  several hundred stitches for a shawl that you might not finish for several months.

Though I complain and procrastinate, I return time and again to knitting, weaving, crochet, and  spinning.  The individual motion of putting spin on a spindle, results in almost nothing. It is the repetition of that motion, followed by many, many more repetitive steps that can finally add up to something beautiful and of value.

Somehow, the thing that I complain about the most, is the very thing that also attracts and compels me: the tiny incremental steps required to add up to anything of substance.

These three little balls of handspun singles were begun last August, from BFL roving dyed by Miss Babs, on a dyaKraft drop spindle.  They are really nothing yet. Many more steps will be required. 

They are nestled in a raku bowl made by a woman named Janka. She was my Mother's ceramics teacher.  This tiny bowl must be 40 years old. My mother treasured it, and I treasure it.  Janka must have thrown a thousand bowls before she developed the skills to make this one. I am grateful she did.