My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #889: I Really Love My Job

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 11-28-2012 01:05 PM 2534 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 888: Little Sleds Finished! Part 889 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 890: Exchanging »

I am a bit late writing this morning, I suppose that is of no consequence to most of you. It seems to be that time of year when there is more than the ‘normal’ amount of correspondence to attend to. Or maybe that is just part of the business growing. Either way, it is good.

A big part of what keeps me motivated and encourages me is the feedback I receive from customers. Whether it is positive or suggestions on how I might do things a little better, it is always a learning process and I try to listen to what others have to offer and weigh each idea with deep consideration.

I think one of the dangers of being self-employed is that working for oneself, you tend to be a bit isolated. Anyone who has their own business (and are successful at it) realize the amount of time it consumes out of your day in order to be run properly. That leaves little time for outside socialization.

Before the days of social networking, I could understand how that would become a problem. People are naturally social beings and locking oneself away and constantly working could easily lead to being burned out.

But with the ability to constantly communicate with others through our computers and the many forums and social networking sites, I don’t think that happens as much. I can only speak for myself, but I find that ‘talking’ to my friends throughout the day and seeing what they are up to is a continual source of encouragement and inspiration. And it makes life fun too!

Yesterday was one of those days for me where several times throughout the day I really stopped and thought about how much I loved my job. I spent most of the day writing up the pattern packet for the little sled ornaments, but in between writing, I was answering questions from customers, filling orders and doing other types of correspondence that were related to the business. I also kept an eye on my Facebook page where many of my creative friends post progress pictures and stopped in throughout the day to splash a bit on the screen about how their day was going. It was a warm and friendly atmosphere and more than once I laughed out loud at the funny things that they were talking about or said. I also was able to help someone through some questions and admire the work that another person did on their current project – all from my own computer right here in my own house.

It is part of what keeps me going on those ‘blah’ days when I don’t feel very motivated. (Yes. They happen to ALL of us!)

The other day a customer sent me a photograph of a project she made. Eden wrote me that she takes patterns that were intended for the scroll saw, and makes other things from them. Recently, she saw my pattern for my dimensional Christmas star ornament:

and she used it to make this wonderful hanging quilt:

When I saw this, it really made me feel good. What a clever idea! Along with the picture, Eden wrote me a beautiful note about how she began doing this about five years ago and how she is introducing this idea to her quilter’s guild, The Enchanted Quilters from New Mexico.

I feel very honored that she chose one of my designs to share with her group. It is instances such as this and wonderfully kind people that take the time out of their day to write me and show me what they do that encourage me on those days when I feel ‘uninspired.’ I don’t know if it is because my little business is growing, or because more people are using the computer as a way to communicated, but it seems to be happening more and more lately. Perhaps it is a bit of both.

I know this may sound like a cliche to many of you, but I really don’t do this for the money. I know that it isn’t good business practice to think the way I do sometimes, and in order to keep doing what I do, I have to adhere to some sort of business practices, but I feel that the real reward for doing what I do is stories like this. When I design, I think of the people who I am designing for and how in some little way I am doing something that may enrich their lives or put a smile on their faces, and those of the recipients of the project that they make from my designs.

And that as they say – is priceless.

Thank you all for your wonderful letters and words of encouragement. You certainly all make my life much better!

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

8 comments so far

View Kindlingmaker's profile


2656 posts in 3576 days

#1 posted 11-28-2012 03:33 PM

Have a warm and smiling day Sheila!

-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View Celticscroller's profile


1269 posts in 2123 days

#2 posted 11-28-2012 05:55 PM

And thank you for inspiring us all to make the most of our creativity!
Have a wonderful day, Sheila

-- Anna, Richmond BC

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 2972 days

#3 posted 11-28-2012 11:13 PM

Another 3D with connections on the center symmetry… I like most when stars are made. Inwards and outwards movements are really great in the eyes. It’s coming that you will be having vertical and horizontal cross joints… what I mean… you can add a shelf-like horizontal flat perpendicular to the vertical axis.. Whatever… I agree with your comment to Martyn that it is deep thinking as the ice submerged when you are in the planning stage. You got it all… thanks for sharing all these ideas.

-- Bert

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2970 days

#4 posted 11-29-2012 12:51 AM

Thanks to you all for the nice comments. I really loved seeing this beautiful design. It is so much fun to see one thing and then realize all the possibilities that can evolve from it. Bert – you have a gift for seeing things in many different ways. I love watching your designs come to life in your blogs!

Being creative and around creative people truly adds much happiness to my life. :)


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

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18308 posts in 3726 days

#5 posted 11-29-2012 05:30 AM

There certainly are priceless rewards for not having a real job, isn’t there ? ;-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3165 days

#6 posted 11-29-2012 07:03 AM

nice transformation Eden have done
creative people have always inspired each other
and always will … now a days its just goes
a little faster to reach each other nerves :-)

have a great day

View Roger's profile


20929 posts in 2854 days

#7 posted 11-29-2012 11:38 AM

You give gratification to all with your talents and inspirations. Keep on, keepin on.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2970 days

#8 posted 11-29-2012 12:13 PM

I had to chuckle when I read your comment Bob about the ‘real job.’ You would be surprised at how many people think that what I do isn’t a real job! It used to bug me, but I have long become used to the fact that some people will never think what I do is ‘work.’ But seeing how what I do affects others is the best payday I can think of. You are right Dennis and Roger – we do inspire each other with what we do. To me, bringing some joy and happiness into others life – even if it is only for a little while – is an honorable and noble profession. :)

Thanks! Sheila

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

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