Monday, January 14, 2013

Creation day

The first tote - polka-dots galore!
Many artists talk about energy welling up before they paint, compose music, or sculpt. Creative tasks lie unfinished until "it's time!"

Works for me! Having cheerful people walking by the cabin helps boosted my "Do-It" mood. Glacier Camp was hosting the first day of the annual "West of 60s" camp. All those friends chatting, strolling, and visiting made me smile. (I have 4 more years before I can attend. I've been waiting 15 years for this camp. It looks like they have much more fun than any other group.)

So... I was thinking. For our daily walks to the post office, I could use a lightweight backpack tote. I bought two 1/2-yard fabric remnants that sat for a week while I figured out a work process AND waited until my art energy got high enough to tip the "GO!" bucket.
The second tote: more subtle navy and cream

The synergy happened at noon. The how-to process became suddenly clear as I hauled out the sewing machine. Within 15 minutes, I'd finished two tote bags, one from each remnant. And then, why not? I used the leftover panels to make a third, a two-print tote.

Tools of the trade: minimal! for maximum fun
When I was done, I was still on the prowl. Upstairs in the cabin, we'd ignored a "Ugly" entertainment center for several years. It's a sturdy Broyhill piece that doesn't remotely match anything else we own.

A few days before, I had a germ of an idea and bought a roll of white MacTac (sticky contact paper, for non-Canadian readers). Seemed like anything white I could create on that storage piece would at least match our white walls! We have a birch trunk in our entry and a few birches outside. White. Well, white-ish. Voila. A birch idea took shape.

"Am I done yet?" Nope. Doesn't feel complete.
The "creation day" seemed like the perfect day to camouflage the piece while I was still looking for something artsy to do.

I started by cutting somewhat-straight lengths from a 78" piece. We had a perfect razor knife (from putting up blinds) that zipped through the stick-on paper like nobody's business.

I thought I might be done after putting up the branches: I remember an art instructor saying the trick for artists was knowing when to say enough. But nope, I wasn't quite ready for "the End."

Left side
Right side
A few more snips and I had a finished product - for now. After a few gashes in the long trunks and a few leaves ...

I considered some pencil shading for realism. [I put those in but forgot to take pictures. Another big improvement.]

It felt like there was still art energy to burn off. Oh oh! I ran down to the kitchen to cook something wild and tasty before I did something silly.

What's your creative project this week?

[This is a repost from August 2012 at]

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