LumberJocks

My Journey As A Scroll Saw Pattern Designer #364: Unstuck

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 06-08-2011 12:37 PM 2357 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 363: Progress Part 364 of My Journey As A Scroll Saw Pattern Designer series Part 365: The Finish Line is In Sight »

I have made some good progress on my skating figures, and will be finishing them up today. I realize that I may have sounded like I was behind schedule in doing them, but actually, I am quite ahead of the deadline, which is the 27th of this month. In reading your responses and also the personal messages from you, I do see that perhaps I do drive myself a bit hard at times and should give myself a break. I looked at the calendar yesterday and saw that I had plenty of time to do a good job and get these to the company for photography. So what am I so worried about?

Sometimes I need to take a breath and re-evaluate things (mostly myself.) I tend to be hard on myself and have been that way for as long as I can remember. Even when I am successful at something, I recall the times when I wasn’t and not wanting to rest on my laurels, I try to push myself more. This is a tough business I am in. Especially when gas is over $4 a gallon in the States and everything else is so expensive. People have little disposable income to spend on their hobbies and the entire craft industry is struggling.

I have been told many times that even if I am able to hold my head above water in times like this, I am doing really well. I look around at my fellow designers and there are very few who are able to sustain a living with only their designing. I want to be the exception to that. I don’t think that it will be easy at any stage of the game, but it will always be interesting and fun.

I had some personal stuff that I needed to get done yesterday in Yarmouth. It probably could have waited a day or so until after this job was finished, but it was warm out and the sun was shining and it was an incredibly beautiful day. I had finished painting half of my figures and I thought it was a good time for a break. So I put the top down on the car and took the long way into town – through the back roads and in coming home, I drove along the ocean. It took me twice as long to get there as it would of had I taken the highway, but it was well worth the extra hour spent. My partner and I discussed his plans for marketing his beautiful pens he is creating and I suppose you could have called it a mobile business meeting.

After I returned home, which was around dinner time, I did the mail (there is always email) and caught up on some correspondences. By then it was nearly eleven and time for me to call it a night.

I feel good today and refreshed and motivated. Since I work pretty much every day of my life in one way or another, these impromptu breaks are important to me. I love my job, as you all know, but I also want to enjoy the rest of life just a little bit too. After all, isn’t that what I am working for?

It seems funny that I have the need to justify these breaks, even in my own mind. I hear how people loathe their jobs on a daily basis and there is part of me that feels somewhat guilty because I like mine so much. Others work for the day they can retire, and in my own mind, retirement simply doesn’t exists. I have built my life around teaching and creating and sharing what I create with others and I realize that I am very lucky to make it work for me.

I live a much simpler life than many of you would choose. I don’t possess a lot of ‘things’. But I am comfortable in where I am. Isn’t that what it is all about anyway? Of course, I would love to have a bigger shop one day and loads of cool tools and not worry about whether or not my patterns would sell. But I suppose that is the price I need to pay for having things the way I have them now and being happy doing what I do. I believe that I am much better off than a lot of people with much bigger bank accounts than I have. And of course, I have my health too. How could I ask for more?

So I thank you my friends for helping me stay grounded and see what the most important things are in life. I tend to get too worked up about things sometimes and it begins to overwhelm me. It is a wonderful gift to be able to vent a bit here and in return have so many wonderful people to encourage me and sometimes bring me back to realty. I appreciate you all very much.

Today I will finish the painting on the figures and make the stands for them. The Creative Paperclay that I use for the stands is an air dry product and takes at least a full day to cure. While that is happening, I will begin to lay out the instructions and get the pattern packet into shape. I found a couple of minor errors on the original pattern and I want to be sure it is correct this time. I have a friend who is a painter that offered to review and proof read the pattern for me. I think I will take him up on it.

I feel calmer today and ready to take on most anything. The past few days I have felt a sense of anxiety, as you may have noticed. But I am ready to move ahead now and it seems that a ride in the country for a couple of hours did wonders for getting me out of the mud I was stuck in. Time to move onward.

Have a wonderfully productive day!

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"



6 comments so far

View KnotCurser's profile

KnotCurser

1852 posts in 1812 days


#1 posted 06-08-2011 12:48 PM

No need to feel guilty about or justify enjoying the fruits of your labor! You earned the money to pay for the gas and the time you took ENJOYING yourself. :-)

I envy your job schedule and would love to be able to take a few hours to do simply enjoy life when I felt like it.

You have a good thing going – just make time for those “rides in the country” more often. :-)

-bob

-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: rrww@rhoadesclan.com / www.rhoadesclan.com

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7885 posts in 1664 days


#2 posted 06-08-2011 12:55 PM

Thanks Bob. Sometimes it is a tightrope when considering ‘time off’. Trick is to have a good balance of work and play, with work winning out most of the time. I work pretty constantly in the winter, with very little times off. I don’t have access to my car and sometimes only get out to do grocery shopping once a week or so. But that allows a bit more flexibility in the warmer months. However, summer is the time when many of the fall and winter designs are due, so I can’t goof off too much. Otherwise I will have a very lean fall and winter. But a day or a couple of hours here and there don’t hurt – and actually help. I don’t mind working until eleven if it allows me those couple of mid-day hours. :)

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View Roger's profile

Roger

15261 posts in 1548 days


#3 posted 06-08-2011 01:10 PM

James Dean said “Dream as if you’ll live forever, Live as if you’ll die today”. I live by this quote
You need to go for more drives with the top down. :)

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7885 posts in 1664 days


#4 posted 06-08-2011 01:14 PM

I’ll be honest Roger – it did feel mighty SWEET to be driving yesterday. I’ll take a car over a plane any day. I have always loved driving and it is pure pleasure to experience the sounds and smells and the warm sun. Simple but oh, so grand!

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View BritBoxmaker's profile

BritBoxmaker

4439 posts in 1780 days


#5 posted 06-08-2011 01:38 PM

Good to see progress that you are happy with.

ps. Try gas (petrol) at $8 a (US)gallon as in the UK at present.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging. http://www.theartofboxes.com

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7885 posts in 1664 days


#6 posted 06-08-2011 02:38 PM

I know you have it much worse then we do, Martyn! I remember not too long ago thinking how $6 a gallon sounded outrageous. Now it isn’t that far off it seems.

Some women buy shoes. Some jewelry. Some take vacations. Some like fancy cloths. I suppose I drive my Mustang in the warm months as my indulgence. I am fortunate that I work from home, as I only need to take the car out on occasions. When I worked in downtown Chicago, 30 years ago, my train ticket was $90 per month, and I had to pay to park the car at the station. Fortunately, I don’t have to drive to work every day. I probably fill the car only maybe 2 or 3 times a month, at $55. If I had to drive to my job, I certainly wouldn’t have (or at least use) the Mustang.

I like to look at it as one of the perks of being ‘on call’ most of the time. :)

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

GardenTenders.com :: gardening showcase