The creative urge will never go away, of course, so my work is changing more toward useful things, textile arts, or else y'all would find me posting from a padded cell. (Do they allow computers in padded cells? No? Oh well.) My reasons for leaving the doll phase of my art behind me are complex, but if I had to sum it up, I'd say a combination of a very weak doll market and a need to stop making things that collect dust and/or take up closet room.
It seems the older I get, the less patience I have with things that are not functional. Please don't get the idea that my home is in ANY way minimalist or sparse--I do still have a smallish collection of antique and art dolls, a million books, and more than enough tchotchkies and seasonal decorations. But compared to a few years ago, my house is practically bare. And getting simpler all the time.
The point is, why make things to sell that I wouldn't buy? I love the dolls my friends make, and I know I will miss the sculpting so much--seeing that little personality emerge like magic. But I'll have to live that part vicariously, because right now I'm up to my ears in a world of rug hooking, needle punch, wool applique, and crazy quilting. I'll publish patterns for the items I make for my home or for gifts I give to others, but with the exception of original small gifty type things (fancy pin cushions, reading glass cases, etc), I probably won't have much but patterns and supplies in my Etsy store.
I'm finding my own way to the understanding of Mr. Thoreau's words: "Our life is frittered away by detail...simplify, simplify." This process will take me a decade, but I've made a start.
Am I equating doll-making with frittering my life away? NO! When I was caught in the passion of learning that art, the absolute zen of any particular aspect--from how to make a good hip joint to how to pain Izzy curls--I was building my life. Building who I am. But change is part of life, and I guess I've changed with it. What challenges me now is to see if I can make the things I'd love to have in my home--rugs on my floors, hangings on the wall (that roll up small and tidy for next season), textures and colors with infinite stitching.
There's a detail to fritter away one's life, eh? Hand stitching? Ha! But it satisfies me the way the doll challenges used to, so I'll take my cue from it.
Forgive the long philosophical post, please. Here's the second in the Seasonal Wall Hanging series I'm working on. This one is Summer. Forgive the photo placement--Blogger has a big hiccup in its photo adding function that seems incurable.
Have a fine Wednesday.