The last couple of days have been exceptionally busy, but not particularly interesting. I came home to a studio that was literally buried in Stuff. I couldn’t even walk in 2/3 of the studio because of all the Stuff, and my worktable was piled about two feet high – no exaggeration!
So the first order of business was to dig out of the Stuff-storm. I’m now at a halfway state, where about 1/3 of the studio floor is still covered, and the worktable is four inches deep, but the flood of Stuff seems to be receding. However, as a result, I haven’t gotten much done in the studio. It’s hard to do anything when there is too much clutter in the way!
I’ve also been busy with a few other projects. The book, of course. Publication for the book blog resumes on Saturday, and since I’m teaching workshops on the weekends of Jan 19-20 and Jan 26-27, I won’t be able to write much either week. So I need to write a bunch of blog posts in advance so I can keep up with the publication schedule. This is especially challenging since the book is currently in a thorny and difficult section. I’m trying to explain how to compose a good design, which requires a good deal of research and thought. Once I’ve figured out the principles I use intuitively, and how to explain them, I then have to construct a bunch of illustrative examples. This also requires considerable thought, followed by a lot of Photoshop work. So it has been slow going, and quite challenging. It’s occupying most of the time that is not being spent cleaning the studio.
And, of course, like practically everyone else in the New Year, I’ve started an exercise program. This one is based on the book You Are Your Own Gym by Mark Lauren, which contains an extensive set of bodyweight exercises. Because they are done using the weight of your own body rather than dumbbells or exercise machines, you don’t need to go to the gym to do them – which saves time and willpower since you don’t have to get dressed, drive to the gym, etc. to do a half hour workout. I find I’m much more motivated to work out when I can do it alone in the weaving studio (aka garage), surrounded by all forms of creative inspiration. Much more pleasant than a gym.
Anyway, while my workouts are still fairly short (about twenty minutes), it’s another time suck. And work has heated up with a vengeance…well, you get the idea. Time has been too short and I haven’t had much time to weave.
Speaking of weaving, I do need to do at least a partial redo of the pattern warp. For some reason, the golden yellow dye didn’t “take”, leaving a sallow, washed-out shade that vanishes visually – not at all the vibrant, glowing color I was looking for. So I will need to redye the gold sections! I think this time I will use Sun Yellow to overdye the entire warp – that will give it the powerful yellows I want, and will be faster than repainting everything.
Here’s a pic of the pattern warp:
The photo unfortunately fails to capture the sallowness of the color – for some reason my iPhone amped up the saturation. But if you compare it to the gold color in the top card – which is what I wanted and planned for – you can see that it’s not nearly as vibrant or as golden as the swatch. The bottom card shows the color I plan to overdye with – this will add yellowness to the washed-out section without affecting the rest of the warp much, since it’s mostly oranges and yellows anyway.
Because it’s the second time in a row I’ve had trouble with the Golden Yellow, I’m suspecting that that batch of Golden Yellow dye has gone bad. Fortunately I have more Golden Yellow, of a more recent vintage, so I’ll simply toss out the suspect batch and use the newer dyes.
I’m debating whether to continue on with this warp or whether to toss on a quicker one. I’d forgotten that I belong to the “Twenty-Four More or Less” study group of Complex Weavers, and samples are due February 15! That gives me less than a month to warp and weave 24 samples. The alternative is to cut up my phoenix sample, but I’d rather not do that if I can avoid it. So the question is whether to put on a “quickie” warp and weave something throwaway, or whether to try putting on the complicated, 1000-thread warp that I still need to redye, and which will be tricky to weave off. It’s not a trivial question.
Off to work on the book! I was on a roll last night, and am hoping to finish the thorny section within the next few days. After that it should be easier going.