Wednesday, April 10, 2019

What ever happened to those daily practices?

This is a sheepish post, and not just because it's about things made with wool yarn.  (yuk-yuk)

With some fanfare I announced to the world in January that I would undertake two daily practices this year:  1) a tapestry diary in which I work through the techniques in Mette Lise Rössing's book The Thread's Course in Tapestry and 2) a perpetual journal of botanical drawings, inspired by Lara Gastinger (@laragastinger and #lgperpetualjournal on Instagram).

I have done OK with the tapestry diary, but I haven't woven every day by any means.  So far I've done 39 techniques in about 100 days.  At this point, here's where it stands.  I chose to work in the wintry palette of northern New Mexico for the first quarter of the year.  I'm looking forward to updating the palette with a few yellow-greens soon.  They are starting to appear, oh so slowly, here.

Molly Elkind, tapestry diary in progress, (c) 2019
 I knew that with my teaching schedule and life intervening in general that I wouldn't weave every day, and that's fine.  Eventually I will finish.  The tapestry diary is supposed to be fun, in my book, not homework.  I had an aha moment when I realized that at the end of the year I'd like to be able to connect each technique in the book to its bit of weaving in the tapestry, so that I can use the diary and the book as references.  So I took a photo of the weaving so far, printed it out life-size, and cut out each little daily bit and glued it right into the book (gasp!).

page of Rössing's The Thread's Course in Tapestry, with my cut-and-pasted additions
I've always liked the idea of making my own textbook and this certainly makes Rössing's excellent book even more useful for me.

As for the second daily practice, the perpetual journal, I did start it with great enthusiasm, but then, it was winter.  Winter went on and on.  And on.   It was harder to get outside and find things to bring in to draw.  And meanwhile life got very very busy.  So while I've enjoyed very much seeing what other people are drawing in their perpetual journals on Instagram, mine has been stalled here.  I hope to get back to it, really I do.

bent stalk of gramma grass

It's about priorities, isn't it?  And my main focus these days is making work for the upcoming Eldorado Studio Tour May 18-19, here in Eldorado, New Mexico, near Santa Fe.  I'm hoping to have three pieces in my series of wedge weave skies, and another three pieces in the new Fences series, in addition to work from last year's show in Atlanta.

Virga, (c) Molly Elkind, 2019.  Cotton.  7.25" x 9.25" 
I had great news last week--one of the wedge weave skies, Virga, has been accepted to the Small Expressions show sponsored by Handweavers Guild of America.  So while it won't be available for the Studio Tour, it will get to travel a bit.  I guess I'd better get back to the loom. . . .