|the piano arrives.....some people get a Long Arm machine, I got 88 short ones!|
Never pass up an opportunity! I heard that there was going to be someone at the university today who wants to try to train people's ears!! Now my ears have long wanted to be trained....so I have volunteered!!
What always interests me are the numerous parallels between various art forms however different the media appear to be at first. For example, there is an absolutely wonderful, (I couldn't recommend it more) website called Living the Classical Life where great musicians talk about the lives, their struggles, their triumphs, fears and hopes. The interviewer is Zsolt Bognár, a fine pianist in his own right.
We all hope that our next quilt will be perfect... listening to these musicians talk about taking months (yes months!) to get just one musical technique right, or to be able to play a piece with great authority, integrity and passion, I just am amazed at the time and dedication that goes into great art. How can we possibly hope to get there with an hour here or there? It is evident, of course, that the really great art quilters of our time spend just about all day, every day on perfecting their art. It all takes a lot of time, and a lot of knowledge and experience.
I do think a lot of the knowledge relates to composition and design. Knowledge of how one goes about creating a strong design, quite possibly making numerous attempts to do so. While the Very Famous Quilters never show us their lesser works, or even their horrors (!), I am sure they do exist - at least for a short while!!
In a way we are just scratching the surface of the art....we may never hit pay dirt!! never reveal the gold, but (as my pedagogue tells me (repeatedly!) when I moan at my failures!) we sure can "enjoy the ride". And, gradually, we'll learn to incorporate those techniques and that knowledge of how things work together whether shapes and values or notes. We will continue to improve our efforts, not just dashing off the first idea and then spending weeks trying to correct the problems. We'll learn to vary the shapes and the edges of those shapes, letting some stand out sharp and bold, and others softly meld into the background. We’ll learn to make music with our shapes and values!
We'll also learn to avoid the most popular subjects, or, at least, if we do use them as inspiration, we'll try to bring something fresh to the work. I have a good friend who paints very competently but who never gets into any art show. Why? Because we've seen the work before....one way to catch a juror's eye is to show them something fresh. And that takes time to figure out...when we first look at our inspiration source, the more trite, the more commonplace ideas come first. You've got to keep pushing, give yourself time ...think about the violinist who only gradually over months and month learns to play a decent staccato.
We also have to learn to use color...oh the mistakes we make when first we leap into a great palette of colors !!! I always start my yearlong masterclass with a monochromatic assignment....and so often those are some of the best pieces!!
It does take time....so be sure to relax and enjoy the time that it takes!!
Less angst, more pleasure!
Unfortunately so many of us these days have been taught over and over to be goal oriented, rather than process oriented. But, in anything that has a slow process, like learning a piece of music or making a quilt (so many parallels!), it's much healthier to be process oriented, otherwise we miss out on all the pleasure and joy to be gained from just working towards that goal.
Sadly so often we come to see the process as a nuisance! Something we have to endure to reach the goal. But if you think about it in terms of one's life??!! who wants to reach the end goal of life? and how awful if you just went careering on and didn't enjoy the journey. So, let's take our time...enjoy thinking of different design possibilities, different value patterns, different colors schemes and so on....Relish the time you spend doing this and be sure to enjoy the ride!
I'd love to hear your thoughts.......please comment!
And, if you have been, thanks for reading! Elizabeth