Sunday, September 4, 2011

Introducing The Chart

When I retired 2-1/2 years ago, I expected to spend the majority of my time doing artwork.  Actually, I had anticipated being absorbed for hours every day painting.  It didn't happen.  The problem, as I see it now, was that there were so many types of art I was interested in doing, so many supplies I owned, so many books with hundreds of ideas in them, that I was simply on overload every time I tried to decide what I was going to work on.  Though I never did get into the painting, I did start doing more art, and it mostly centered on photography and Photoshop, and developing work for my two Etsy shops. 
This past July I heard about the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI), and that got me back into fiber art.  To participate in the AAQI, a person makes small art quilts to donate.  The AAQI sells or raffles off these mini-quilts (the largest they can be is 9"x12") and raises money for help fund Alzheimer's research.  The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative has raised more than $576,000 for Alzheimer's research since January 2006!  Since I was into making art quilts for several years, this was a good fit for me.  So far, I've done eight of these small quilts.
Despite being involved in different art projects, I still felt "scattered" in what I was doing.  Then mid-July I woke up one morning with an idea for The Chart on my mind.  The idea was to list the different things I was interested in doing, and do at least five of them each month.  I would print out pictures of the final products, and glue the pictures to The Chart.  I was also trying to jumpstart my blogging (yet again...) and chose BLOG for one of the entries, anticipating doing 25 blog posts/month, and putting 5 hash marks in each of the five squares on that line.  July, I had 18 hash marks for blog posts.  August I had four.  What this said to me (yet again...) is that I really don't like to putting out the effort involved in blogging.  I considered eliminating BLOG from my chart.  Then new inspiration struck, and I realized I could do five blog posts per month - and put a picture from each post in the square on The Chart.  I knew, for sure, that I could manage five blog posts in a month, especially if it meant I could glue more pictures on my chart. 

One line on The Chart says "QUILT" and these are picture of the mini-quilts that I've made for AAQI.  Another interest of mine is loaning money through KIVA to help small business folks around the globe.  KIVA got its line on The Chart, and I plan to do five new loans each month, and add a picture of each of the new loan recipients.  (Kiva's slogan is "Empower people around the world with a $25 loan.")
One line on The Chart is ACEO.  These are the small art cards I make, and to get on the chart, the ACEO must be completed and listed online in my Etsy shop, House of Cards.  Then there's the line that says CARD, and that refers to the notecards I make, and that get listed in my other Etsy shop, Paper Press.
That leaves CLAY, which is making projects with polymer clay - something I love, but seldom get around to doing.  CANVAS - that's painting or clay or fiber art, or really anything that then gets mounted on a canvas.  There was one canvas in July and three in August, and, actually, it was being able to post pictures on The Chart that helped motivate me into doing them!  (You know - it was like gold stars when you were a kid.)  Three of the four canvases are 8"x10" and the fourth is somewhat bigger. 
One more category - BOOK.  This is the book I'm writing/intending to write, about our years of living on a sailboat.  In July I managed "Introduction."  I actually have a lot more written, and have scanned lots of slides, but it can only make it onto The Chart if it is a completed chapter.  At first it was going to be the title of the chapter, but now - if/when I complete other chapters - I'll post an image from the chapter, rather than the chapter title.  This means that all the squares could potentially be filled with pictures. 
Now, I can only wonder how September will go....

Stay tuned.


Pepper Cory said...

Excellent job of explaining your motivation and the timeline to your work. Loved reading it and actually I understand your method better now! Just saw Katjia (sp?) is likely gonna turn away from the coast---yahoo! Now I don't feel so guilty being safe here in the NC mountains.

Vicki Lane said...

That's the problem with having many interests ... but it's a nice problem.