Thursday, 19 June 2014

creative cross-pollination

tanis recently wrote a blog post about something i think we creative types often find ourselves struggling with - the balance between focusing on our main creative pursuit (i.e. the one that pays - or sort of pays - our bills/crafting habit, or that we love the most and can't imagine living without) and all the other things we love/want to try and perhaps learn to love. the fact of the matter is, that working in multiple mediums is incredibly healthy for the creative juices. maybe not so many that you get completely overwhelmed, but certainly a few is good to do. it's amazing how much inspiration for one project can come from another totally unrelated project. like, i will often be trolling pinterest for fibre inspiration, and find something that inspires a show design or even new performance concept. take, for example, this floor cushion.

great for a kid's room, yes, but also, i would just like it for my own use. meditation pillow, cozy floor cushion, excuse to work on my crochet skills, all that good stuff. you know what else would be great? an interactive show that is designed to be in the woods and has the audience sitting in the space on these giant mushrooms. see how that single cushion just flowed from home decor to a (very alice in wonderland) show concept? 

my current active wip pile, four shawls worth.

sometimes, i get stuck in a knitting groove. and that's perfectly fine, because i love my knitting, but occasionally, it gets a bit mind-numbing. specifically when i have so many deadlines coming up that i can't afford to start or really even take much time to consider new design concepts. and then i start worrying, because i'm an anxious creature, about taking too much time away from theatre creation, and how i need to be coming up with concepts a year or two or five in advance in order to get the grant money in place to start working on that next piece. and then i worry that maybe i'm stagnating.

look what arrived in the mail yesterday!
the simplest break can provide some space and mental clarity, however. today, i was doing the laundry and cleaning up my room. i stumbled on some older sewing projects, and took the time to read my mollie makes usa over coffee (yes, coffee is back in my system again), and clean up my room, and block the test knit. and then i was going through some old notes on my phone and found a couple lines of poetry that inspired two pages of text for down the rabbit hole's next incarnation. these small little tasks made me feel like i was accomplishing things, and that can be just as important as working on large projects. i still have some pretty major knitting projects to get done in the next 2-3 weeks, but today, i feel like i'm getting somewhere. and having a clean bedroom and clean sheets is a bonus. 

colouring books have always been one of my favourite creative escapes. they're so calming. this is my current favourite.

getting inspiration from other creative types is also fabulous! a couple of exciting upcoming events in winnipeg (besides tonight's panorama in the exchange district): 

w.e.s.t., etsy canada, and compendium artist market are teaming up to bring an etsy made in canada event to manitoba on sept. 27! there are several ways to get involved. you can find more details here. i'm still sorting out in what capacity i can commit myself to it (september is really not that far away), but i'm thinking either attending as a vendor or as a demonstrator could be a lot of fun. between my etsy items and closet clear-out (of handknits), i could get myself in order as a vendor. but is there something you'd be interested in as a short workshop/demonstration? i'm open to any and all fibre-related suggestions (except spinning/crochet…i'm still a novice at those and wouldn't feel comfortable teaching others any sort of technique beyond how to incorporate them into other design work). 

wolseley wool just announced the early bird registration for their 7th annual fibre retreat in the whiteshell! it's happening in november, and it looks pretty spectacular. i don't know that i'll be able to attend this year, as i'm still unsure what my work status will be this fall, plus i have to arrange my life around down the rabbit hole's tour anyway, but next year when i don't have a tour on the books would be a lot of fun! 

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