Over at ArtFabrik, Laura Wasilowski blogged about how working in a messy studio made her comfortable and productive. Here’s a term you may or may not have heard. Work Dance. When I was still working, most of the teachers would start to show up in their classrooms anywhere from a month to two weeks ahead of the first work day. Some would immediately set up the room, decorating the bulletins boards and arranging the desks. Others would sit down in the midst of the summer cleaning mess and plan out a year-long curriculum, getting their minds in gear immediately. Still others would have another process. A conference speaker once referred to this as the “work dance”. Everyone has their own “work dance” routine. I always had to have the classroom looking perfect before I could begin to plan out the lessons and processes. My environment had to be set, even on a daily basis, as I always cleaned up and organized the room before sitting down to look over the students’ daily work.
Some teachers never seemed to have the need for a decorative or organized environment. I envied the way they could hone in on whatever task was at hand and move out the door towards home more quickly. No particular way was the “right” way, but we learned we all had unique “work dances”. I taught this term to my students so they could begin to understand themselves and also to tolerate better the other 32-36 students with whom we shared our limited space. We each danced to our own music, but tried to keep the same beat! In our studios now, we can dance to whatever beat or music enthralls us that day – we are very fortunate!
After watching an episode of The Quilt Show, I had to try the easy piecing pattern demonstrated by Tula Pink, modern quilter and fabric designer. Here is the result… a day brightener after so many cloudy spring days – a double-wide table runner with a traditional 9-patch in the center to pull it together. Luckily, this week the skies have cleared and we are having wonderful, warm sunshine…. so the pool will beckon. I’ll have to get an early start up in The Loft Studio so I can spare some pool time in the afternoon. Unfortunately, I’m also waiting on a gardener to come and plant the azalea garden under the sunroom windows… lots of “waiting” for him to fit me into his busy schedule. Hoping today is the day!
On my post from yesterday, I have a password that only my daughter knows. I am designing a quilt for her, and I posted a bunch of options for her to consider. I’ll open that information up once we are further into the process. It’s just easier than sending photos by email or getting together for a face to face session. Pardon my password security for now, please.
Meanwhile, before I send “Home Farm” and “Watch Out Below” off to Knoxville, TN for a quilt show display, I am making some changes and additions to them. I attended a critique session during the PAQA-South Conference last weekend. What an eye-opener! I brought “Home Farm” and “Watch Out Below” to show to the artists so they could give me advice on what was working and was not working. First of all, they thought that “Home Farm” reminded them of Grandma Moses, which I thought was a great compliment because I do want it to have a folk art quality. Then they gave me pointers on how I could improve the work. The artists there were gentle, but still so talented at showing me how I could improve both pieces. Once I get the alterations completed, I’ll show some side-by-side pictures so you can see the changes and appreciate the differences. Meanwhile… off to The Loft Studio to get to work!!! DH is off golfing so I have a day to play!