Sunday, September 23, 2012

Debriefing - Merely Part 1 of... - Or, "To Sirs, With Love"

Although I'm in the middle of threading the last piece for the exhibition, (which will be installed, golly, in a week!!) since I wove the last plain weave shot in my fourth pillar, I've been debriefing with myself about the exhibition and the last two years of my making. That's pretty much the length of time I spent obsessing about large blurry thingamajigs hanging in a tall space. I'm glad it's over; I've no residual sentiment. In fact, it's worrying how far back in my past I've put them; they're piled up on the floor unfinished and perplexed looking, and I step on them from time to time while doing other things. I suppose I should finish them, make the casings, cut and drill holes in the dowels, sand, thread fishing lines, spray-paint the metal bits, etc., etc., etc. If I weren't such a control freak, I would hire someone for these.

I feel a shift in my focus. This morning on Facebook Pracownia na kaszubach (though that's not her name) linked to a whole lot of photos by this weaver, and again, I was filled with nostalgia that at one time I would have gone googoo gaga over her work. I think her work is wonderful, and I may even be tempted to buy one if I had the chance to feel them, but I want to weave something different. I was taken aback to find myself wanting movements. I felt smothered in the rigidity of repeats.

Yeah, it's that pesky word, "dynamic" all over. I know Randy (by which I mean Randy and Brian, and not the Randall Darwall brand,) injected me with the idea six years ago. It felt like an annoying prick on my head at the time, but the injection filled every fluid part of me, every gap between the cells inside my skin. Back then it felt as if he was drowning out my aesthetic. I'm told it takes seven years for all cells in a human body to be replaced by new ones, so the injection must has been taking effect, seeping into my every new cell, and my conversion is 6/7 complete.

(I still have the 1/7. Just last night I was reading the graphic design book, and this section had good and bad examples of page layouts. Alongside it reads: 
"Centered elements create passive white space, while asymmetrically-positioned elements create activated, dynamic white space... Passive white space is static. It looks motionless and 'left over.' It isn't used to guide or draw the reader into the design. Passive white space is hte chief offender in making documents ugly, if indeed, they are noticed at all."
Centered or left-justified, hands down my preferences were the most conservative, evenly-spaced passive pages. The eyes feel restful and comforted and I can concentrate on reading, rather than the eyes jumping all over and not taking in any one information.) 

It's also taken me six years to "study" Randy's work instead of being bulldozed by R&B's awesomeness and my adoration and admiration for the two. (Still feeling slightly miffed they didn't decide to adopt me and take me away at the end of the workshop.) It's only this month I felt comfortable enough to handle his scarf I bought to have a closer look. (Still feeling somewhat begrudged Megg, Ali and Jill for skipping the kowtowing and going straight into accurate analysis of elements in the piece. "Gosh, you guys don't know R&B like I do!!!!!" OK, not so much Jill, she knows them way better than I. And lest you wonder, I've only ever taken a five-day workshop with them, so I don't know them know them. Nothing scarier than a cyber stalker.) But where is the ceremony if one simply picks up a Randall Darwall and ... and... looks at it analytically?  How dare they???)

(Regaining composure, wiping tears from laughing at myself, and a little bit from the acute lack of awe by some.) Anyway, looking at the one which resides in my house and many others on the Internet I have the niggling sensation that I have begun to sense what Randy meant by "painterly" and various musical phrases. Yeah, I'm slow. But I don't mind that my 0,0 is a smidgen closer to what Randy taught us. And I think I am fulfilling what Randy suggested; I'm doing my own apprenticeship.

Where to after the exhibition? I wan to revisit exploring the visual elements of Log Cabin, Shadow and Corkscrew Weaves. I want to explore the tie-down part of the tied weaves. I'm now curious about designing with multi-layered weaves.

I want to use my colors. Pat burst out laughing whenever I say this, but Connie's recent "Shabby Journals" (which are anything but) gave me the push to return there. While I now see 50 colors are nicer than five, I want to explore more analogous combinations, and sheen/saturation contrast. I feel my way of using many colors so far has been just piling up hues, and though I think I'm more open to accidents than before, I also want to train my eyes/hands to use colors in a controlled, considered way.

I'm also sticking with Alison's design process because if I understand what is blocking my way into doing things her way, I sense it will aid me in developing designs further than I do. And this is important because I've come to feel my design process is rather naive and I'm itching to move a step forward.

OK, enough blathering. Back to threading. Thanks for letting me bend your ear and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

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