Sunday, January 8, 2023

Step by Step


This is the draft for warp #3 (for now).

There are times when I can make great leaps of imagination, other times when I feel the need to go more slowly, more thoughtfully.  And so it is with this weave structure.

It's a fairly simple concept, but I'm finding it makes more sense to me as I think carefully about how I want the lines to move within the cloth.

There are some challenges and other areas that I could make changes to, not just the threading, but I want to feel as though I have a better grasp of it before I begin tinkering with the tie up - the area where there could be much larger changes made.

There is little pressure on me to 'hurry' now that I'm no longer dependent upon selling my textiles for a large chunk of my income.  My state pensions actually about equal, if not exceed what I used to make from weaving.  But now my income is monthly, not compressed into the final quarter of the year.  And my needs remain modest - because as a 'starving' artist I never had much leeway in my budget.

This is giving me all sorts of freedom I never had, removed the monthly worry about how I would pay the bills, buy more yarn, replace equipment or repair it should it break.

Frankly the life of a 'starving' artist is a detriment to doing thoughtful work. 

'Drive' was never missing from my life - I seem to have been born with an internal drive.  When I became a weaver, that drive materialized (heh) in terms of creating cloth.

And really, that's been the biggest challenge for me in my 'retirement' - where do I point that 'drive'?

What is it I want to do now, in the twilight of my years?

Three years ago, I remember thinking, very clearly, that now I didn't have that perpetual requirement to bring in money to feed the business, I would be able to take a more intellectual approach to textiles.  

And then the pandemic hit and the whole world was turned topsy-turvy.

On top of that, my personal health issues continued to worsen and three years on my life, my dreams, my ambitions have had to be radically adjusted to accommodate the new reality.

Fortunately I am, at heart, an introvert, but one who writes.  So the new reality of my hermitage is that I can stay at home and reach out to the world at the end of my fingers (so to speak).

I am able to adjust my schedule to meet the new demands of my body and take naps if needed, or sit up in the middle of the night to wait for the painkillers to kick in, if needed.  I can come to the desktop and play in Fiberworks, or sit with the ipad and play games if the brain fog is too great and thinking not possible.

Since most of my communication is via the written word, if I have a brain cramp and can't think of the word I want to use (I *know* it's in there somewhere, dammit) I can usually write my way around the blockage - and still (I hope) make some kind of sense.

In the meantime, I carry on.  I'm not entirely sure what warp #4 is going to look like.  Will I feel confident enough in my understanding to begin tweaking the tie up as well as the threading/treadling?  Perhaps.

The pressure to produce is off.  But not my desire to continue to learn.  Explore.  Experiment.

And what more can one ask for in a life?

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