The Joy of Work

Detail of Jazz Rhythms

Detail of Jazz Rhythms

October was a very busy month for me, with two major shows–the MPA Artfest and the Great Falls Studios Studio Tour. I had tons of fun meeting new people and sharing my work and I was pleased and gratified that a number of my quilts went to new homes last month! A big thank you to all of you who visited me or contacted me online–I enjoyed chatting with you and I really appreciate all your feedback on my work.

Getting ready for a major show, let alone two in two weeks, is an exhilarating, exhausting undertaking. For me, at least, it’s also a time of intense creativity that makes me realize why I love my work so much. When I’m gearing up for a show, typically I have an idea of what I want to exhibit and I always try to have as much new work as I can so it’s interesting for people to come see me. It never fails, though, that I have more ideas than I can execute in the time I have available. Sometimes I have two or three pieces in process on my design wall and several more ideas bubbling around in my head. I try to write down either a rough sketch or a few words to capture the thought for when I have more time. Usually I’m working late into the night and up early in the morning to finish as much as I can before the show opens. It’s fascinating to me that I thrive on these times. The creative force that drives me gives me such energy and appreciation for the ability to do work that I absolutely love doing, no matter how much time I spend doing it.

Many people ask me how I have the patience to do the work I do. I’m a little confused by the question, because I’m not a patient person. In fact I’m very impatient when I have half a dozen ideas in my mind and not enough time to realize them right away. I enjoy every part of the process of creating and I feel incredibly fortunate to have the ability to follow my dreams of creating art and sharing it with others.

Which brings me to “Jazz Rhythms,” the detail which is shown at the upper right. You can see this quilt in progress by clicking on the “Color Block Series” category at right. I finished the quilt in September and entered it into a major show. On Friday I received notice that it had been rejected. So my great month ended on a down note, but when I looked at the list of artists who were accepted into this particular show, I realized that the jurors were most likely looking for a different kind of work than what I submitted. It doesn’t mean that my work isn’t good enough, simply that it didn’t work with what these particular jurors were looking for for this particular show. Humbling, but I’m still excited about this quilt and this series and I have a few new ideas to move the series forward!

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