Saturday, June 9, 2007

Good Grief!

Finally, I think I'm starting to get over this hurdle, the idea of saving stuff "for good." You know -- where you buy or receive as gifts beautiful things and then stash them away in a closet for Someday, that special day that requires "good" stuff. I bet lots of people die before they get to use the good stuff.

My particular stashing includes fabric and other artsy-craftsy supplies. I guess I'm waiting until I feel I'm "good enough" at something to warrant using the supplies. Well, duh, how am I supposed to become even remotely good at something if I *don't* use the necessary supplies?!

Case in point: a set of silk painting dyes, a beautiful Japanese bamboo-handled brush, some gutta (a liquid resist used for clean-edged lines) and a white silk square scarf. I bought these little gems in Vancouver, BC, more than 15 years ago. Then I hoarded them for years, moved them across the Atlantic, and hoarded them another 10 years. Why? Not really sure.

Until today. Today I decide to try the dyes on some other silk I have, so I can do something fun with it (make fabric beads, another post later). Upon opening the box, I discover the instructions missing, the gutta completely dried out, and the dye-fixative turned a nasty brown gummy consistency. I toss the gutta. Now my painting will have to be soft-edged blurriness. Fine.

But no instructions? And what about the spoiled fixative? Hmmm... time to check the web. Googling leads me to a practical alternative for setting the dye without the fixative, plus expands my knowledge about silk paints vs. dyes (who knew?).

Now I'm set. I tack the small silk square scrap onto the wood frame, squirt out some dyes onto a plate, and start painting. What fun! How nicely the colors run and bleed together! At least the actual dyes hadn't spoiled over all this time. Tomorrow I will try the steam-set method I found on the web, and then maybe pull out something, anything, else I've been saving "for good" -- tomorrow will be a good day for that.

1 comment:

Frère Gare said...

Sounds like a metaphor for life in general... saving special things or experiences or aspects of ourself for the perfect time can lead to them drying up and becoming compromised with time and neglect. "Someday, I'll learn how to use this..." or "someday, I'll take that trip to..." but "someday" won't present itself. You just have to pick it up and do it, or it won't get done, although everyday life does its damnedest to prevent us from doing anything out of the ordinary and mandatory. "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." as John Lennon says... this is a good reminder to stop planning and just start doing. :)

Boy, have I got a lot to catch up on... with great relish even.