Word for 2011

posted in: Work in progress | 3
So many quilt artists on the QuiltArt list are choosing a word for the year. Some have chosen great words like acceptance, act, balance, believe, breathe, build, change, create, efficiency, eliminate, experimentation, explore, finish, freedom, “git’erdone”, gusto, “have fun”, hone, inspired, joy, “just do it”, lighten, “no limits”, organize, patience, peace, perseverance, “quilt!”, repurpose, and spunk.

I don’t think I can really choose just one word, but I do have a general idea and direction. How do I sum it up? I want my art to grow this year. I want to be more free, less predictable, less static. I hope to do on more experimenting and less fretting.

Sometime around 2005 the Christian recording artist Nicole Nordeman came out with her song, “Brave.” This song resonated with me because I feel like I’ve always done the expected and the safe. I want to be brave and take risks with my art! Here are the lyrics.

The gate is wide.
The road is paved in moderation.
The crowd is kind and quick to pull you in.
Welcome to the middle ground, it’s safe and sound,
And until now it’s where I’ve been.
‘Cause it’s been fear that ties me down to everything,
But it’s been love, Your love that cuts the strings.

So long status quo,
I think I’ll just let go.
You make me want to be brave.
The way it always was is no longer good enough.
You make me want to be brave.

I am small and I speak when I’m spoken to,
But I am willing to risk it all.
Say Your name, just Your name.
And I’m ready to jump, even to ready to fall.
Why did I take this vow of compromise?
Why did I try to keep it all inside?

What approach will I take? I typically start with books. Lots of books! Yesterday, DH went to the library with me to pick up 41 books that I had on reserve.

Poor DH! He asked, “Do you really need all these books?”

“Apparently,” I replied sweetly. And then I put about thirty of them in his arms to carry out!

I love reading, absorbing images, and letting it all soak in. I also hope to make a dent in the art supplies and fabric I’ve been hoarding through the years. I hope to concentrate more on experiments and fabric sketches, and not worry too much about making “Art.” I have a loose goal of making one “sketch” each day. Sometimes it may be a pencil or marker drawing. Sometimes it may be a 24″ quilt top so I can keep working with fabric and color. I might quilt a few of these, but I imagine most will remain simple quilt tops.

On to the books! Today is a day to read and absorb and be inspired.

3 Responses

  1. Wen

    Time will tell. My word breathe into transition. Well yes three but I couldn’t decide!
    Good Luck to you!

  2. Robin Koehler

    What wonderful words. I am very near where you are though my word is transition (more on my blog). I heard a song recently that resonated with me, “Firework” by Katy Perry. It talks about being ready to shoot across the sky and shine and not wait in the wings anymore. I get choked up everytime I hear it because the fear of moving forward can sometimes be overwhelming.
    I wish you well on your journey through 2011!!!!

    • Maria

      Let’s keep in touch, Robin. Maybe we’ll be able to encourage each other through the year.