Friday, October 19, 2007

day seven: overloaded

What a fabulous couple of days. A fabulous week, really. The Artful Rug Hooker Symposium was a resounding success, and I am so glad that I came. Not only did I have the chance to meet lots of people, I was also able to reconnect with people I'd met before - even someone who was in a class I took in Vermont and another person I'd met at the American Folk Art Museum - both over five years ago!

There was a good selection and variety of talks: thoughtful, inspirational, educational, funny, controversial, challenging, emotional - many some or all of these. We always had an opportunity to ask questions at the end of each presentation and even to speak one-on-one with each of the presenters in a more intimate setting, if desired. This really helped to contribution to an atmosphere of interaction and collaboration.

I have so many ideas swirling around in my head and I cannot wait to get started. The hardest part will be deciding what to do first. Mind you, this is made a little simpler by the challenge Linda Rae Coughlin issued today... Everyone was given a different image, and we were challenged to create a small mat (maximum dimensions of 18" by 18") inspired by this image. The project must be started within the next week and completed by September of next year. The intention is that the finished pieces and the actual image inspiring the work will be displayed together at next year's Symposium. It will be great fun, and I am looking forward to the challenge (although to be honest, feeling a little scared at the same time). I will try to post a picture of my image once I start working on the project. (within the next week, of course! ;-) )

The funny thing about this type of challenge is that I (foolishly) look around at other people's papers and instantly suffer a minor case of "green-eye". Why is it that I seldom happy with what I have been given? Why do I always feel the need to compare? I'm sure that it's not just because I have two sisters and we are always comparing and evaluating whether or not things are "fair". Maybe it is just that it's human nature to look for an easier route....and part me knows that I will never have to actually execute my ideas for someone else's picture. I will admit that my picture has been growing on me this afternoon...and hey, it is supposed to be a challenge, after all.

The only drawback of the two days? I hardly got any actual hooking done. I never really seem to get much hooking done in class, and I brought this simple project, hoping it would help me get more done, but it didn't really seem to make much difference. Seriously, this isn't really a problem, but I think that next year I will just bring some knitting with me - it's a little more portable and it doesn't take up nearly so much space in my luggage (my hooking stuff filled a bag all on its own). And hey, I can knit on the plane, too!

Sadly it's time to start packing and finding room in my bags for all of my new wool, books, and cans of Keith's light. Tomorrow I'll be wearing my new rug hooking t-shirt proudly on the plane I say TTFN Nova Scotia...