Friday, July 31, 2015

Week in Review 2015 - 07/31

Tips, Thoughts and Techniques:

I'm nearly finished with Deconstructed Sunrise.
Just 10" remains of the binding to stitch in place. 
Are you SMART when setting goals for yourself? I am most of the time. When I am not, that often leads to a time of frustration, feeling overwhelmed and a need to stop, regroup and refocus. SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time (deadline.) An example of a SMART goal I set for myself is to write and post this blog weekly. It is specific - write a blog entry. It is measurable. I know I have obtained my goal when I press publish. It is attainable. I am capable of writing a post weekly, versus something much more difficult, if not impossible for me, such as writing a novel in a month. It is relevant. My passion and avocation is being a fiber artist. Posting my blog weekly is my way of sharing what I do and connecting with others. Finally, it has a fixed deadline. I post each Friday morning. In fact it is the very first business I attend to on Friday mornings.

I started Deconstructed Sunrise #2 this week.
I need something less than 100" square to enter in a
Wisconsin Visual Artists exhibition. I find working
"small" very difficult.
Can SMART goals be applied to making the artwork itself? Sometimes yes and sometimes no. At least that has been my personal experience. When I made work based on quilt blocks I found it easy to set a goal of doing so many blocks per studio day or per week. It is more difficult for me to break my current work into anything but stages. I suppose I could monitor the time it takes me to hand stitch a binding, create a sleeve or FMQ a given area, but I don't. Is it because I don't want to know? I have the sense in all I do when making my art that it takes a long, long time. That I ought to be working faster, producing more and working more efficiently. What is the fun in that? Today, I will give myself permission to be hyper organized and goal driven in some areas of my life and relaxed, messy and goal-less in others.

OK, I am never completely without a goal as you can see by what I accomplished this week:

1) Continue the finishing work on Deconstructed Sunrise - Done!

One advantage of working small, though, is that
it works up very quicklycompared to larger work.
I designed the basic structure on Monday. The next day
I pieced (actually turned under and fused) the fabric.
One more day and I had begun the quilting.
I managed to hand stitch the majority of the binding. I have less than 10" to go. I also have created my split sleeve, so I will stitch that on next.

2) Free motion quilting practice.  - Done!

Actually, I did quilting practice and not FMQ practice as I worked on my newest piece, Deconstructed Sunrise #2

3) Post the number of days I have worked in my studio in 2015 - 58.5/126

4) Perform a random act of kindness - Done!

My goal for next week is to accept that with all that I have scheduled outside the studio, my studio time will be greatly limited. I will work on the following with the time I have:
I am loving the gentle contrast between the photo
of the sunrise and the fabric it sits on. There is just
enough black in the trees to allow the photo to stand out.
It was strategically placed to provide a focus
point for the eye.

1) Continue the finishing work on Deconstructed Sunrise

2) Deconstructed Sunrise #2 (Due August 25, 2015):

  •  Finish quilting it.
  •  Decide whether additional embellishments would help?
  •  Start the finish work.

3) Free motion quilting practice. 

4) Post the number of days I have worked in my studio in 2015

5) Perform a random act of kindness 

I am now linking up to two blogs on Fridays. The first is Nina Marie's Off the Wall Fridays and the second is Free Motion Mavericks.


  1. This is a really interesting piece.

  2. For me goals are good but deadlines stress me out and I don't do my best work because of it. And as you say, we don't do this to be stressed out which is why I try to stay away from deadlines :-)

  3. Broad goals are a good thing, I think. But after retiring from a job with many, many goals and deadlines, I have purposely tried not to be too goal-oriented with my quilting. When it starts feeling like drudgery or a "job," I know it's time to step back. But we are all in different situations in our quilting and it's best for each of us to do what works best for us. It sounds like you've found the right balance for you. I really like your quilts, and especially that little detail in your last photo.

  4. Your goal setting discussion was so well explained. What I was most impressed with was your understanding that goals need to be achievable/realistic in the first place! I'm one of those organized gals.....when I know there's a deadline (for anything, even if it's months ahead and not just my art), I'm kinda am not comfortable until it's finished....lit's ike an itch that needs to be scratched.

    Aren't we fortunate to have the time and interest to keep ourselves so busy!! I pity anyone who says they are bored.

  5. Hello Gwyned,

    I am totally with you - keeping a regular schedule with blogging, but being elastic with time spent on projects. The creative part of the brain doesn't work to a time table, so I have never kept track of how many hours or minutes I spend on anything, only weeks or months, and occasionally days or years.

    Deconstructed Sunrise no.2! Oh excellent - I love variations on a theme. Now you have me wondering, how big is no.1?

    Thank you for linking up with Free Motion Mavericks!

    Love, Muv