You didn't think I was going to do this indefinitely, did you? It's hard work and takes a lot of time. I am loving the process and some of the pieces I have completed, but I am missing taking more careful time to go through the creative process.
Someone commented that I could change the "rules" as needed and she is correct, but I really want to stick with it as I've loosely defined it for myself. The process has certainly given me more appreciation for artists who do these *every day* projects. It takes dedication.
I finished #19 on Wednesday.
I'll be making 40 pieces. I decided to embark on this project as a Lenten discipline. There are many reasons that I didn't share the details of my process in the beginning. First, I consider my faith to be quite private and personal. But at this halfway point, I thought I'd write a few thoughts about my process.
Here is the halfway piece.
I begin each day by reading the scripture assigned for the day from the Daily Lectionary, trying to read only for content. It's just 10 to 20 verses, so very short. Sometimes I have instant ideas for the art, but I try to set those aside and let the words just soak in. I don't read the Bible regularly. I hear Old Testament, Psalms, New Testament and Gospels in church every Sunday, but I wanted part of this process to be about becoming more familiar with what the Bible has to say to me. It certainly has. Some days more than others.
Then I read the passage again for further understanding and initial inspiration for the art. Usually, I read it one more time.
I don't listen to any music or podcasts during the whole process. I try to be open to further insights from the symbols, stories and mood of the scripture. This is hard. Especially when I am doing hand embroidery which is such a slow somewhat mindless process, I want to fill the time with something other than daydreaming, I mean... being open to the spirit.
I strive to portray the themes and mood of the scripture in the art, but avoid obviously representational images. A few of the pieces have images straight out of the scripture and they were very fun to create, but that was because the scripture really lent itself to my style.
Here is Spacious Place from day #13. The reading for the day was Psalm 31 which includes the line, "I have become like broken pottery." Ding! Lightbulb! I've got broken pottery in my button stash.
It also includes the line,"My times are in your hands." Aha! My watch face collection!
So that piece was really a great combination of symbolism, spiritual growth and understanding and a nice piece of art as a result. I think it's my favorite thus far. I also love the title, "Spacious Place." I just love the sound of those words together in addition their meaning.
The process continues as I finish the entire piece including, backing and edge finishing. Honestly, I was better at finishing in the early part of Lent. Sometimes I add final touches on the following day. But I am going to try to get back to finishing each day. It feels more complete -- not just literally.
I choose a title from the words in the scripture. With my regular work, I usually have a tough time coming up with titles, so I really like this process. I try not to choose obvious titles because I don't want the scripture to hit the viewer over the head. I know what it means and I would probably be happy to share my ideas with others, but I also want the art to stand on its own without the accompanying scripture.
You can see all my blog posts including the daily works by clicking on "daily" at the very bottom of any of the posts. I've uploaded some of them to my Flickr which is a nice option to see all the thumbnails in one group.
Thanks so much for your comments and enthusiasm. Sharing them via the blog has been a wonderful motivator for me to continue.