As an artist, its great to be busy so I'm not really complaining.
Well not too much.
But I am EXHAUSTED!
I'm the one who scheduled all these shows last year knowing that there would only be two weeks in between four shows back to back to prep for each of the shows. And then after the fourth show there would only be three weeks to get ready for the largest consumer bead show in the U.S. - Bead and Button.
What was I thinking?
Sure, I am crazy because most people take nearly 2-3 months to get ready for this show.
So you heard it from me personally... I am crazy.
Lisa is CRAZY!
(about sharing her art with as many folks as possible)
Well, I'll be in Milwaukee by June 5th, next Saturday.
I had the bright idea of going early so I can do some photography in Chicago and visit around Wisconsin before the big show. What I should have done instead was to schedule extra days AFTER the show which would have given me a few more days of studio time.
These are my mini-vacations, extra days before or after a show. I don't have time to vacation in exotic places otherwise.
Live and learn.
So I live...
I can be very focused and have been diligent in the studio but even a determined Lisa can humanly only work so many hours each day. I make the most of the time still remaining. My hands can only sculpt so many Botanicals before they ache each evening.
My poor right hand has two callouses from sculpting each flower petal. It can not be avoided. It is how I do my magic to create this series to share with the world... the story of the Ume...the plum blossom folklore. It is the cost of creating my art which I wholeheartedly understand and welcome.
So bring it ON! Bring it on.
Please don't ask me at a show if I make every one of my beads and if I use a mold?
It is a question I get at least once every show. I can't assume that everyone is familiar with my work in the vast bead world. But I hope when people look at my glass work you will notice that NO mass production facility can create beads of this quality, color depth and personal detail.
What factory would put this much heart into their work?
But I will answer those who ask me each and every time with a smile. And then show you my right hand, which I sculpt glass with. If you want to touch my callouses to feel if they are real, please do. Just know that it does bother me a bit when someone questions whether I am the beadmaker. I work long hours and suffer callous hands for a reason. The meticulous details, small and large, I place in my work is the reason why you may think I use a mold. If you can find a mold that does what I do, PLEASE let me know.
With My Hands, I Create.
I create from my HEART.
I create with a vision and dream of the possibilities.
So what I was REALLY trying to get at with this post was the schedule has been SO crazy that I miss the things I used to do more often when I had more time.
Do you know that I have two eight foot tall bookshelves full of books which I have not had time to read? I miss that. Those books have been sitting on the shelves for many years and there is dust collecting on them. I know I can pick any book out and read it any day but exhaustion encompasses me at the end of most days to do much more than manage the day to day activities of being an "entrepreneur".
You know what though?
I am a proponent that you have to make time for the things you love. I should listen to my own advice. So soon, after I tackle Bead and Button I will indulge again in some of the things I have missed. I'll have nearly seven weeks of no shows but that doesn't mean I'll be taking a break from the studio. The beads don't make themselves folks. I have a bevy of Summer and Fall shows to prep for too. So things will remain busy for this girl but just not as crazy.
I will give myself the need to escape, perhaps in one of those books on my bookshelves. Authors like Patricia Cromwell, Robert Tannebaum, Richard North Patterson, James Patterson, etc. sit in dust waiting for me, calling to me. I have so many favorite authors I used to visit with time and time again.
The good or bad thing about my reading habits is that if I like a book I can finish a 500+ page book in one day. I am (or was) a voracious reader. I will give up sleeping to finish a good book.
Yes, I am fanatic about reading and that is why I have not read a book in a LONG time, not because I didn't enjoy the process but because I knew if I read, I would only read. My glass and studio time would suffer.
Of course, there is the knitting too. My fiber addiction and a walk in closet full of wonderful yarns! I have taught myself many things over the years and knitting is one of them. The satisfaction of finishing a project!! The feeling of excitement to wear something I made with these hands and the wonderful yarns I select for each project. There is also a sense of pride when I have the time to make a gift for a love one. I miss this! I MISS!
There are several in process projects that have suffered from completion. I have a habit of selecting huge projects that take months or years to complete.
I love knitting blankets!! Yeah, I'm crazy. But think of ALL the love in every single stitch of the blanket. Love it.
Well, I started back knitting a few days ago. The particular project was at the foot of my bed, in a plastic bin of chosen yarns. Over SIXTY skeins will complete this project!!
I picked the project up and found the modular blanket pattern I had started late last year on my night stand. My notes carefully scribbled with alterations and stitch counts to spice things up a bit. My hands remembered easily the pattern after glancing at the instructions. It was as though the project never left my hands, these fingers. The needles flowed with each stitch and the knitting brought comfort to me, working on a project that I missed. Working with my hands, creating something from simple components, I love it.
So, hello again, Blythe Blanket!
(My blanket is blue, purple and green and has black borders around each square. It will be slightly different than the photo below.)
I've missed you.
Even though it will take me months to finish you, I will.
Then there is my beading. I see my Facebook friends uploading beautiful finished projects into their photo albums and then I think to myself why I only bead these days if I am writing an article.
It is true.
I have not really beaded for FUN since before writing Bead Romantique! My main focus has been my glass work and prepping for shows. My beading has always been another comforting craft I indulge in between the busyness. Many people think that since I write about beading and create projects for magazines, I must also teach and have kits. I bead and write because I want to share with the world my love of beading. That's why I write so much but I have been taking a break to focus back on my glass work. And many of the projects you see in magazines are usually created the same week before a deadline.
Designing. Creating. Writing. All in a two week duration while working in the glass studio too. Now do you realize why I have little time to do the things I miss?
I suppose having an assignment and beading last minute challenges me. I so miss beading but I will get a chance to bead soon after Bead and Button. Yes, it is for a special assignment that I will talk more about later. I wish it was for pleasure but I can only justify so much indulgence without feeling guilty.
At least not TOO guilty.
So I'm looking forward to June and July for the things that I miss. I miss doing them and I will make time (somehow) each day to do one of the things I miss. I miss doing many things. The sacrifices of an artist. It's what I must do. I will miss less things soon. Doing many things keeps me sane and creating. That is why I have so many interests. Good or bad.
Thank you for dropping by to read from time to time. I know we are all busy so I appreciate the time you spend on my blog or on my Facebook. And, I'll try to be here more often to share my thoughts. I should be better about blogging even if these hands ache from a long day in the studio.
No more excuses.
P.S. Yes, yesterday, I finally started decorating this blog a bit with a new banner. After starting this blog on 07/07/07 it was about time!! There was a reason for starting the blog back then... to write to you...share with you a bit about ME. Thank you for being interested in my work and allowing me into your lives.