About 8:20 PM last night while watching Heroes I got this idea in my head that wouldn't go away. Mind you, there was a piece on the wall that needed to be finished that wasn't calling to me and I have a dozen sketches and scale drawing in my planner to do, so I was at no loss for something to work on if I truly wanted to. I could have started quilting on some of the completed tops. Most of the sketches will be apart of my solo exhibit in 2008 that I have tentatively titled "Back to Square One" the other in the sketch book will be included in a group exhibit of River City Fiber Artist where the theme will be ( The River's Edge) and then this is the joint exhibit with my friend Valarie White in 2007 which is non -thematic. The idea that was in my head was in no way going to work with the ideas for my solo exhibit or either one of other two. I tried to ignore the idea, continued knitting a sock and watching TV.
But when the idea was still insistingly in my head at 9:15PM when I'd, had no plans to work late, I gave up put down my yarn and needles and I went to my space.. began to select and cut fabric.
Mind you I had to remove the rather large piece that was on the wall, labeling each part carefully to make room for the idea in my head to develop. Even that task before me didn't stop me. Then I began to cut, sew and arrange and cut more and sew more and arrange more.
BLAH BLAH BLAH. NOT NOT NOT. NO NO NO OH NO At 3:10 AM I decided I hated it. It was so awful. And nothing was going to make it better. I didn't need anyone to tell me what was in my head was not what was appearing on the design wall.
I'd been flying by the seat of my pants so to speak and I was crashing and there was no parachute handy.
"When will I accept that improv designing and compositions is NOT ME."
I need Structure. I need Limits. I need Plans. I need Order.
Despite my disappointment I was charged up and wide awake. So I decided to get back to another project that was in the works and that was my signature piece for Form Not Function. The small work isn't due until January , but hey, time flies. Thanksgiving came and went in a flash. (Three days after the holiday and there isn't enough turkey left in our house to make a decent sandwich.)
Christmas isn't far off. Before you know it, it will be January.
Well last night just as fast as I could snatched every pieces of fabric from the design wall, toss all in my scrap basket I just as quickly put away my disappointed. I began working on my signature piece with gusto. Before I knew it my signature piece which measures only 12" by 20" was completely pieced and quilted and it was 5:45 AM.
There is still more to be done with the piece before I can call it done and show it to you.
My thoughts on my signature pieces is while I call it that when I have made them they are not truly representative of what my current work is about. In retrospect they have given hints of where I wanted to go. I also think they are more like a journal page for those of you who are familiar with these small works which wasn't a term for small personal works until after 9/11. They document where you are at one moment in time with your art. Maybe where your head is.
When looked at seriously as the artist they can tell you if you are in an experimental mood. Or if you are hanging on to some sense of familiarity not trusting that the net would appear if you had made the leap. In my case I think mine tend to be a little guarded and tentative.
I have several ideas for future work that pushes me beyond what is comfortable and familiar to me but am reluctant to try them at this time because I keep telling myself I don't have time to play around. I have too many commitments Besides. I have always worked in a large scale and am comfortable working large. But then I dislike start something exploratory in a large size just in case it does not work. On the other hand, I don't make samples either to play with a technique or idea because I often ask myself if it turns out great what do I do with this "Small work".
Maybe I should tell myself in the case of wanting to see how some idea turns out or technique works that I need to do a personal exhibit of signature pieces for a wall in my bedroom. That way if the Signature piece turns out great it will have a place to live and if it doesn't it will add only a little bit of stuff to the trash can or the scrap basket.
I think I have struck on something here.
I have a feeling that vampire-itis will infect me again later on this evening and for many after mid-nights to come and I will be up late enough to almost see the sunrise again and again.
No crosses or stakes through the heart please.