The verb...to commence: to start or begin; come or cause to come into being
The poet, Rilke, wrote that "...to commence is ever in itself a beautiful thing."
For me, those very first steps of the creative process are so incredibly charged with energy and emotion. The initial idea, the planning, the gathering....I absolutely love it. I love the first sketch on the canvas and the first piece of paper applied. Those moments are so full of wonder and mystery. I am challenged and motivated. I love the simple task of washing and folding the fabrics I have chosen for a quilt, the measuring, cutting, and constructing. I love looking at the cut fabrics neatly stacked by my machine ready to sew. So often, somewhere between these charming moments and the completion of a piece, I seem to get thrown back to the very beginnings again by a new idea that has burst into my head. I feel drawn involuntarily into the cycle again, mulling over the new idea, dreaming about it, planning and gathering again...and again...and again.
Endings...completions...can be beautiful as well. For me, they are certainly not as charged, nor are they as fulfilling. There is a sense of emptiness, a letting go, the curtain falls. It's done. It's over. It leaves a little void that sends me rushing to another beginning.
I purchased the fabric for a pillowcase for my daughter last summer. She loves owls. I wanted to surprise her. She was ridiculously excited when I brought it home. It has been sitting on my sewing table. Three days ago, I put it together. Wow...I waited months for something that literally takes minutes, but she is very happy.
Cloth and Bobbin (clothandbobbin.com/)(http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cloth-Bobbin/58537381401) just got in some of the Marcia Derse collection called "Line 5." Of course, I had a really strong reaction the moment I saw it. The colors are a tad desaturated and the designs are simple and soft geometrics. I have those first ideas, but they may change as I go along.
Here is my "Star and Stripes" quilt. I was in the store showing the quilt to Johanna, and fiber artist, Cindy Friedman (http://www.cindyfriedman.com/dev/) happened to be there. As we were talking about the quilt, my thoughts and ideas about it, I mentioned that I might add some stripes here or there, and she simply said, "You have to know when a piece is done."
Like most of my days, February will be filled with beginnings and ending. I want to find a passion for concluding. I want to unearth the artistry and value of it. I want to watch the boxes get emptied and the piles diminish. Somehow, in this endeavor, I hope to bring each project to a new beginning that is recharged with fresh potential.