Someone, I forget who, mentioned the book Art and Fear by David Bayles and Ted Orland. It is packed with gems, and funny to boot. Of course I promptly bought it for Sonny Jim, the diffident artist, but he already has a copy (unread), so now I have a copy too. I'm liking what I'm reading. Here's a piece of gold:
People who produce art (quilts) are people who have learned not to quit.
Quitting is easy. Just ask my basket of unfinished projects. The illusion that the next project will work out perfectly will eventually drive you to drink, or chocolate, as it consistently proven to be false! If you want to produce a quilt, particularly an art quilt, you have to learn how not to quit. Quitting is not the only way out. Try to have a catalog of strategies for those moments when you can't believe how much you hate something you have expended so much time, energy and hard-earned cash on:
a. Ask for advice! One of our most talented guild members brought in a quilt she felt wasn't working. One piece of advice was to rotate the quilt. Voila, it no longer felt unbalanced, and was pronounced very good! Fresh eyes and different ideas can make a big difference.
b. Hang it somewhere your eye will light on it unexpectedly. It may suddenly be obvious that you need a different shade of green, or that the perspective is off, or the focal point needs to be strengthened. You may already know how to fix it, you just need some distance. Putting it away for a week or two helps get some perspective too. When you look at it again, you may feel differently.
c. I have a bazillion books on design etc. but I never take the time to make myself an emergency checklist. It would be helpful to go
focal point - check
contrast - check etc.
Next week maybe I will get as far as chapter two!