Sandra O.

This week I’m breaking all the rules as set out in the lesson plan as I have made no extended squares. I have had house guests for the whole week, and while I’ve not done any extended squares I’ve involved my guests in my textile activities. I chose to do it this way as my guests are very important people in my life, and this is the first time they have been with me for any extended time and were able to see and experience for the first time the nature of my involvement with textiles.  As my guests arrived and I read the exercise I felt stressed and anxious. With activities planned every day (some days we weren’t home at all) this was not an exercise that excited or challenged me.  They were going to leave on Monday when I then planned to do the exercise, but due to major mechanical car problems they eventually drove out this afternoon (Wednesday the 20th).

In a number of ways I live rebel characteristics and practices.  Publicly I’m seen to be living in a conservative role and life style.   This is the expectation of others to the role/lifestyle that I’m in.  I’ve always rebelled against those expectations, but not loudly or in a way that would offend others, but in a way that allows me to carry out my life as I want to.  I appreciate it’s difficult for me to describe this for you without saying what my lifestyle is, but I choose not to do that.

I find that I regularly challenge myself with daily rules and expectations.   I can’t and won’t live in a messy house, so I change, challenge, negotiate and continually adjust how and when I do those things I regard as necessary to provide an environment that I’m happy with.  I also have involvement with a lot of people, both with my husband and on my own, and I gain so much joy and pleasure from these.  But the time that these connections take can be so interruptive to my textile work.  So I’m now working on having visits with friends, appointments and shopping on same days so that I can have two full days at home each week, in the studio. They’re the full days.   I also like to have a range of work on the go so that I can fill in the 15 - 30 minutes spaces.  These are good spaces for a review of work on the go or for reading or selecting fabrics or threads for a coming up project.

And I’m so pleased that in two of the textile groups in which I participate, we bring up and throw out many art rules. My work is nowdays so much more “freeform” with few rules.

As I don’t know what the exercise will be for Week 3, maybe by not doing any extended squares I may have made it difficult for myself. For me that’s part and parcel of being a rebel, that is, taking the chance and then responding to what comes next.