Tuesday, April 28, 2009

PROCRASTINATION - What's Your Story?

Below are some quotes about procrastination that I really like. Pick one and tell us how it applies to your art and life: (I love to get comments!)

Anyone can do any amount of work, provided it isn't the work he is supposed to be doing at that moment. ~Robert Benchley

The two rules of procrastination: 1) Do it today. 2) Tomorrow will be today tomorrow. ~Author Unknown

You may delay, but time will not. ~Benjamin Franklin

Someday is not a day of the week. ~Author Unknown

If you want to make an easy job seem mighty hard, just keep putting off doing it. ~Olin Miller

What may be done at any time will be done at no time. ~Scottish Proverb

A year from now you may wish you had started today. ~Karen Lamb

Source: www.quotegarden.com/procrastination.html

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Sarah's Ring

It was no coincidence that I posted the quote below on Sunday. I knew what my next blog was going to be about: Sarah’s Ring.

Sarah and I met through the young adult singles group at a church I went to 20-25 years ago. Like most people in the group, I eventually got married and lost touch with most of my friends and acquaintances. The last time I saw Sarah was at my wedding in 1993. That was a coincidence. She was attending a banquet at the same hotel/convention complex and saw the sign for my wedding on the door and she poked her head in to say hi. In 2006, I began my jewelry training at the local technical college. I knew she taught there and I hoped I’d run into her sooner or later. Well, it was more later, but to shorten the story some, I saw her at a bake sale and invited her to our student jewelry show/sale. She brought with her a beautiful 10x14 oval jade cabachon and a mangled ring that it once was set in. She said it was her mother’s ring (she had passed away) and could I make a new setting for it?

This was my first major commissioned piece, and in 14K gold which I had less experience working with than sterling silver. I found a beautiful filigree head that was about the size of the stone. She loved it as much as I did and so I ordered it. Unfortunately, it was a fraction too small for the stone. Now, my stonesetting experience at the time was limited to about 6 rings I made in stonesetting class, barely enough to get my feet wet at the skill. I put a few inquiries out to jewelry making forums on how to do this. As you may know, it is not typical to set cabachons in 4 prong settings but it certainly can be done. Getting written advice is definitely not as good as seeing someone else do it, but I plugged on with it SLOWLY.

Being a perfectionist and knowing the trials and tribulations I went through with jewelry class projects, I did not want to get ahead of my abilities. And I did not want to have to do things over or repair them in process. I did not work on the ring when I did not feel I could give it my best, so it took me awhile to complete the ring. Just when I thought it was completed I decided the stone hung over the setting too far unprotected on the ends. Now what was I going to do? After thinking about it for a few days, it dawned upon me to use the end prongs from her old setting which were still usable. I had some difficulties getting those on the new ring and one broke off once so I had to redo it, but I persevered and yesterday I finally delivered the finished ring to Sarah. This piece is a redesigned family heirloom that she will pass on to her niece someday when she herself passes on. The original end prongs that I used to solve a problem that had arisen in process gave the ring even more beauty and sentimental value.

So what point am I trying to make? Perseverance allowed me to provide her with a beautiful heirloom ring. Taking my time allowed me to work through the challenges without having to redo things over and over, or having to replace a prong or two in the process. Was it all a joyful experience as I was working on it, and did I feel guilty for how long it was taking me? No, and you bet.

But I sure was happy yesterday when I saw the smile on her face when she got the ring. That smile and thank you made it all worth it. And I got the challenge of taking on and succeeding at a project that I would probably never had attempted or finished on my own. And, despite some minor imperfections, I was very happy with the finished product.

So don’t be afraid to take on a challenge, but remember to be patient and persevere throughout the process. I think perseverance has helped me get or achieve most all the good things I have in my life and that will probably be true in your life as well.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Patience & Perseverance

"Patience and perseverance have a magical effect 
before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish."   

 -John Quincy Adams

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Posting comments

If you have trouble posting comments, try this:  The first time you press the submit button, it may give you a message about the comment not posting. Push this button again, and it gives you one of those cryptic words to retype. Then submit it again and this time it should work.


How tedious is a guilty conscious  - John Webster (English writer/playwright 1580-1632)

I don’t know about you, but I have dealt with guilt for many years about not having a “real job”.  These days EVERYBODY has, or used to have, a REAL JOB.  If you didn’t, there must be something wrong with you, or so I thought.  I guess this is why I never pursued any of my art beyond college, even I thought I thoroughly enjoyed it and did well at it (at least my teachers said so).  I convinced myself I wasn’t good enough to make a living at art.

So like many of you, I pursued other options that seemed right at the time, but never really made me happy.

This morning I decided to look up the definiton of guilt: 

1:    the act of having committed a breach of conduct especially violating law and involving a penalty.

2a:  the state of one who has committed an offense especially consciously

2b:  feelings of culpability, especially for imagined offenses or from a sense of inadequacy: self- reproach.

3. a feeling of culpability for offenses.

The only one that comes close to describing me is 2b, so I looked up the definition of self-reproach:

 - a feeling of deep regret (usually for some misdeed)

- the act of blaming yourself

A “guilt trip” is defined as a prolonged feeling of deep regret.

Okay, so maybe I have been on a major guilt trip. But to where and for what?  What misdeed have I done? 

The loss of income?  Would that extra income have made my husband and I happier?  In many ways, no.

For not becoming the successful person I could have become?  It depends on how you define success.  And my life isn’t over, yet.

So I declare myself and anybody else out there who has felt this way, “NOT GUILTY!”

Go work on your art and try your very best to not feel any guilt about it, because you are not doing anything WRONG!  

You are doing something right, creative, and beautiful!




guilt trip