Thursday, June 20, 2013

Ongoing Inspiration

Yesterday, I encouraged you - me - all of us - to play more. One way to play is by working in series. Series work will push your creativity no matter what series you're working on because it takes an idea and builds on it one expression at a time. At a certain point, you push past the obvious and into new territory that stretches your creative abilities.

While we all need to find our own way, whether you work on multiple projects or one at a time, I firmly believe that series work is vital to artistic growth. It could be a type of garment like a t-shirt or part of a garment like collars or a technique like making fabric from fabric or a theme like stripes and dots. Basically, it's anything you can make more than one of - more than a dozen of - make many of. To the uninitiated, it can sound boring and repetitive. It's not. It's an amusement park.

The dotted fabric above was the only one in the selection Marcy brought to sell that called my name. I bought two yards. Most of my fabric collection comes from the same sources - Fabricana in Richmond, Fabric Depot in Portland, Pacific Fabrics in Everett,, and - predominately - from the bargain center at the Fabricland in whatever Canadian city I happen to be in.

Unless I'm shopping for a souvenir - like this dotted fabric - or something unusual that I'm willing to pay more for, I am almost always a bargain center shopper. One of the reasons I became such an avid bargain shopper is limited finances. Like series work, having less to spend forces you to make do, use up, re-invent the wheel, look harder, find within your studio, and so on. Not being able to buy whatever you want helps you to use what you have in new ways. It also helps me shop with better focus. I make less wise decisions when I have more money to spend.

Tonight, I'm staying across the street from Pacific Fabrics. They have a large bargain center as well that I'm looking forward to scouring. On the drive home, I'll visit one - possibly two - Fabriclands. Last year, I shopped on the way to the retreat and then realized it would have been better to shop afterward - with the inspiration picked up at the retreat - so I'm doing it the "right" way around this year - LOL - only I have a LOT of inspiration at home already. I'm being picky.

I might also stop at some second hand stores. I like refashioning and have - once again - been inspired by the pieces Diane creates. She collects quality garments as she finds them and sometimes resells them with no or some work done. This linen dress was on her rack of garments for sale for $12.00. I couldn't resist such a ....

... fabulous bit of ongoing inspiration. It will be a reminder to play, have fun, experiment, see what happens, not hold precious, just do... you get the idea. Other than raising the shoulders slightly, it fits me fabulously although I'm debating evolving it into a skirt. I absolutely LOVE the hem detail.

Yesterday afternoon, I came back to my cabin for some quiet time and when I returned to the work space, the group was at the end of a discussion about running a business. I'm going to assume it was divine intervention that prevented me from taking part in the entire discussion although Gayle filled me in on the general gist which was along the lines of doing what you want to do to create the business you want to have and leaving the rest because we can't do everything. Yes.

Having been in business before - and having been totally burnt out - I think the number one aspect of any art related business absolutely has to be the care and keeping of the artist. That said, I'm not sure I want to have a business again but I do know that I want to create one of a kind, unqiue items whether they are clothing or accessories. I'm energized, inspired, focused, and ready to go home now. I'm looking forward to getting back to my studio and back to work. VBG - all that inspiration running around in my head needs an outlet. I'll post again next week.

Talk soon - Myrna

- I found it difficult to work in a group situation this trip and really missed - and am very grateful for - my studio, my stash, and the organization and flow of my workspace.


  1. You clearly have entered a new phase, and are fully present for this stage of the journey. Well done, you!

    And your advice about series work is spot on for me. Thanks.

  2. ADORE the linen dress. And your thoughts about business, creativity and inspiration.

    1. The dress is gorgeous. I think it's going to end up a skirt though because I am not the jumper type and I love skirts and the buttons on the side are fabulous as an opening.


Thanks for commenting. I appreciate the feedback and the creative conversation.