I have to smile to myself when I think about yesterday.
I do so because the way that the day turned out for me. It wasn't bad, mind you, but it was totally NOT what I intended it to be.
I had worked so hard over the weekend on my "Nevermore" painting pattern. I had finished painting the design sometime Saturday I think and I had committed myself to finishing up the pattern by Sunday.
Normally, this would not be a huge or difficult task, but the pattern is headed for an online magazine called Interactive Artist Magazine and I wanted it to be "just perfect." This was my first time I would have a project featured on their site, and with the potential of reaching many new painters, I wanted to make a good impression.
Those of you who are familiar with my work know that I always strive for a level of excellence. I do make mistakes from time to time, but I firmly believe that offering the best instructions possible for my projects is something that is a given. This is even more important where painting is concerned, as there are many more variables to painting a pattern than to cutting it out on a scroll saw. Even though the design may appear to be complex, as with anything – when broken down into smaller steps I believe it is attainable by all. In order to do this, I made sure to take many photos along the way when I created it. This was not only the best way to explain the process to those purchasing the pattern, but also served to help me remember the order and steps taken to create it in the first place.
In the end I included 30 step-by-step photos with the pattern. It isn't that the process is that complicated, but I wanted to be sure that even a new painter could follow the instructions and learn and create the painting. I think I succeeded in accomplishing that objective. (I suppose time will tell!)
But creating the pattern took much longer than anticipated. While it should be no surprise to me, I am often amazed that I still tend to underestimate how long things take me to do. You would think I would know by now. I spent the entire day Sunday drawing the line work on the computer, preparing and adjusting the photographs and writing the step-by-step instructions. By the time I finished, it was 12:32 am – but I was very happy with the results. It is (I think) one of my 'better' patterns and I am as proud of it as I am of the design itself. I had received so much encouraging input on the design, that it made me push myself to even a higher level. It was all so very positive.
I guess it just goes to show the power of positive encouragement. When we encourage and praise those around us, we instill in them a sense of worth and I believe it causes them to push themselves to an even higher level. I had learned that as a teacher, but this past weekend was a very strong reminder of just how powerful positive reinforcement can be. A few kind words can make a huge difference in ones' life. Not only do they perceive themselves in a better light but I believe that those good feelings are increased self-worth doesn't only confine itself to that singular aspect – it spreads through their entire being.
So after I completed my work and sent my pattern out, it took me an hour or so to unwind before I went to sleep. There was no way that I would have been able to sleep without relaxing for a bit and allowing the adrenalin to wean. It was after two before I even attempted to sleep.
Six o'clock came pretty quickly yesterday. While I was still tired, I know my body and there was little I could to do stay asleep. I am pretty much used to arising at six and even though I went to bed quite late (for me) my body still wanted to get up. It is just the way I am.
But with the pattern all submitted and the satisfaction of having a really nice project under my belt, it was with no guilt that I decided to take the day 'off'. After all – I felt I earned it. Besides, the house needed attending and it was time I got back to the gym after my little back injury a couple of weeks ago.
As the day unfolded however, little things came up that needed my attention. An email here. A phone call there. Finishing up some writing that I needed to do. Laundry. General cleaning. Correspondence. Etc., etc. There seemed to be just no way to get away from things. I didn't really mind them, but I certainly didn't get to paint or embroider. It was just the way it was.
I finished my last 'important' email after 6pm. I still had laundry to do and the house isn't what I see as being at 'its tidiest'. By this point, the four hours of sleep the previous night was catching up on me, and I was feeling really tired. I fell asleep on the couch while reading emails somewhere around 8:30. I decided that my "day off" would have to be postponed one more day. I wanted a day to really have some time not to think about too much, and while I still will be on my computer to answer emails and fill orders, other than that I want to keep things pretty much low key today. So I am trying again.
I love the world I created for myself. I love every aspect of my job – from the creative side to the customers that I get to meet and talk to and the companies whos products that I enjoy working with. It is a good existance and very fulfilling and fun.
Only sometimes, I just need to unplug – at least in part – for a short time so that I can recharge my batteries and not only tidy things up, but do some things for no other reason than 'I want to do them.' Today WILL be one of those days.
I want to work on a new Tracy Moreau pattern that I purchased over the weekend. I absolutely loved her new Faux Cloisonne Sea Horse pattern.
She uses beautiful colors and textures and I have an idea of how I would like to paint it. If you click on the name, it will bring you to her Esty store where she has a sale on her new patterns for only $5 each. They are available as instant downloads, so you can start painting right away.
Tracy has become one of my "favorite" designers. I love how she explores many different techniques that are easy to do but have FABULOUS results. I hope you visit her Etsy page or her website to see more of her work. (http://www.tracymoreau.com/store/WsDefault.asp?Cat=PATTERNS) I could easily spend weeks painting her awesome patterns!
So that is the plan for today. I still have some cooking to do, but I also want to tidy things up and I plan spending the day really just painting and putzing around. I hope the day turns out that way!
Wish me luck!
I wish you all a wonderful Tuesday!
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"