Thursday, December 6, 2012

In Production Mode.

The past two weeks were spent getting more products ready for the Shopping Holiday Season. This business of selling is so counter to the way I live, and want to be, that I find it a source of unease in my felt making. In my own life I am trying to reject consumerism, constantly questioning do I really NEED this THING.  My journey through some difficult life events made me really look at what truly matters. I came to clearly see the ways that all the messages we are fed through advertising, of needing and wanting MORE, just leads to a viscous cycle and a constant feeling of discontent. It is much of the reason that I no longer watch TV or listen to the radio. Instead of the WANT I am now trying to see the ENOUGH. I often think about survival training; we NEED adequate food, water, and protection from the elements, everything else is really a WANT. Learning how to live with very limited funds reinforces these lessons. Because at this point in my life I do live in this consumerist society I am feeling the NEED to sell my felt. I think I NEED to sell for many reasons beside providing those essentials for life: mainly to pay for more wool and to feel that there is a good reason to spend my time creating. I could go on and on about this subject when the simple point is to express that I have been feeling a bit at war with myself.
So now time for some shameful self promotion by showing the THINGS I have finished.
(Side note: when I went to add photos to this post about consumerism and money matters I found out that I had used all my free space in Google's Picassa so I HAVE to purchase more space if I want to continue adding photos to my blog. How ironic.)

 I made a few scarves, and some Christmas ornaments...well, Vicki my daughter made the ornaments, but I felted the little white balls and designed the snowmen.

I also finished another NoBody. This one is a puppet like  Betty the Burlesque Beauty but without the arms and legs. I am really determined to be able to make a good puppet, but figuring out the shape of the resists has been the challenge. I am getting closer but still have a long ways to go. Here is this guy (I think his name is Mortimer) making a few faces for the camera.

 One of the things I need to fix is the placement of the hole in the back.

But best of all I finished some things that were started a long time ago and have been in my UFO box.
I am especially happy to say that I finished felting the hat that I started last year. I had to stop felting it because my hands and arms were hurting me...a lot. I could do the softer felting but not something like this that requires so much strength to press down and rub and to stretch.

It is a very large Men's hat. I bought the large size hat block because we have a lot of big domed men in the family....too many brains I guess. I am proud of it for a few reasons. One is that I worked on a project that has been kicking around so long; that is always a triumph for me. I am also proud of the way the felt came out since I picked out the fleece, washed the fleece, and carded the fleece.
I am also proud of this hat for a strange reason. For many people, an art piece is not considered good unless it looks like the real thing. I used to buy into this notion...and I guess I still do to some extent. I did not feel like I was a good artist until I could do those realistic drawings that I did for work. Drawings like this...

So, I was happy that my hat looked like it might have been manufactured, not hand made by some lady in Connecticut who bought a fleece to felt something with. It is a very strange way of thinking and really shows the conservative influence of my upbringing. I am trying to remember that it is the maker's mark that is often what makes a piece really special and that perfection mainly demonstrates technical skill not creativity. Besides, I don't believe that perfection is attainable by humans. I have to remind myself that doing the best I can at the time is really what I should strive for and that does not mean always doing my best work.
There has been little work of the felting nature being done this week. Many hours have been spent doing new listings for my Etsy shop. Is that more shameless self promotion? Yes, I will admit it.

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