Monday, November 21, 2005

Almost Finished Objects

Last month, I wondered aloud about the whys behind my many works-in-progress and UFOs. I had a great big "aha" moment when I read these paragraphs on page 68 of week 3's reading in The Artist Way:

For the artist who endured chidhood shaming–over any form of neediness, any type of exploration, any expectation–shame may kick in even without the the aid of a shame-provoking review. If a child has ever been made to feel foolish for believing himself or herself talented, the act of actually finishing a picce of art will be fraught with internal shaming.

Many artitst begin a piece of work, get well along in it, and then find, as they near completion, that the work seems mysteriously drained of merit. It's no longer worth the trouble. To therapits, this surge of sudden disinterest ("It doesn't matter") is a routine coping device employed to deny pain and ward off vulnerability.

After reading this, I immediately thought of a half-dozen nearly finished projects, like this hand-appliqu├ęd, hand-quilted wall hanging, an early class project that lacks only a binding. There were a pair socks, waiting for the last half of the last row to be bound off the second sock, a lacy scarf I knit last month and only needs to be blocked, a sleeveless turtleneck that was finsihed except for the ribbing around the second armhole. There's another quilt waiting for a binding and several tops that need borders to be complete. I had a fully knitted hat and pair of fuzzy feet slippers that were waiting to go into the washer to shrink and felt and be finished. I gathered up some of these almost finished objects and made them my goal for the week ... I made some progress but this remains--without a doubt--an issue for me.

1 comment:

Debra Dixon said...

I love the quaintness of your basket of flowers. I am a sucker for baskets of flowers anyway. How long would it take to finish--an hour, hour and a half?

and the knitting--you could be wearing some of those items right now in your cold weather.

If you are waiting for permission to finish and feel OK about the projects, I will give you permission. I don't know about your holiday shopping list, but it looks like your UFOs could take care of some giftgiving.

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