Wednesday, January 6, 2010

This speaks to

the root of my problem with prop building. I have noticed that I have become more and more hesitant to try building something unless I know that I can make it perfect. I see failure as the final outcome rather than just a bump in the road. When did this happen? I have made crap props before....and managed to learn from the experience and move on, but in the past few years, not so much so.

Lately, when wanting to try new things I have spent too much time soliciting advice (or more aptly, validation) from my friends and fellow prop builders to make sure that I will do it "right the first time" rather than just giving it a try and possibly learning something on my own rather than blaming/relying on the advice of someone else for the outcome of the final product.

The more I rely on others to validate my own path...the less I seem to move.

Don't get me wrong. I relish all the help and feedback from my friends and fellow yard haunters....the problem is with me not taking the momentum and moving forward.

Honestly, I am just afraid. That takes many forms, fear of them thinking I copied them, fear of not being original, fear of criticism, fear of failure - it is all the same. A complete waste of time. All, some or none of those things might come to pass - I never know, because I don't seem to try.

Then there is the endless, and I do mean endless, conditions that I put in my way...I need to have this, I need to work in this space, or I need to be in this mood, or I need the workspace clean.....I convince myself I have to wait until all these conditions are met, which almost never happens :D

Believe it or not, I do have a point here :D I was recently inspired by:

A Word of Advice by Anne Bogart

Do not assume that you have to have some prescribed conditions to do your best work.


Do not wait for enough time or money to accomplish what you think you have in mind.

Work with what you have right now.

Work with the people around you right now.

Work with the architecture you see around you right now.

Do not wait till you are sure that you know what you are doing.

Do not wait for what you assume is the appropriate, stress-free environment in which to generate expression.

Do not wait for maturity or insight or wisdom.

Do not wait until you have enough technique.

What you do now, what you make of your present circumstances will determine the quality and scope of your future endeavors.

And at the same time, be patient.

Thanks to my friend Mead Hunter for sharing these words of wisdom.

This was all driven home to me when I remembered back on the Christmas present I made husband. Without really thinking about it and the project as my main focus, I was able to create it despite, all these factors that would normally have stopped me:

· The shop is a frickin' mess after Halloween
· It was freezing in the shop, literally, I just came indoors every hour before frost bite set in :)
· I was able to create it in a small 24x24 inch space I cleared off the work bench -I did not need the "whole bench cleared" as I would have said I did if you asked me before I started the project :)
· I was trying a completely made up technique for part of the project
· It was too cold and wet to paint, but I drug out a heater and managed to dry primer and several coats of different color paint.
· My inability to measure the trim and use the chop saw correctly - husband is now the proud owner of a hand miter :)
· The fact that I could not find many of the wood working tools I needed and could not ask husband, lest I give the game away.
· It was meant to be surprise, but since husband works at home, I could not find time to do this without him knowing I was up to something....oh well, I changed gears and told myself that it would be fun knowing he has got to be wondering "what the hell is she doing out there?"
· Since it was the holidays, there were lots of unplanned events and visits (all very fun) that put the project way behind schedule

Even with all those things that would normally hinder me, I just kept going and finding solutions, never really stopping to think about what was going wrong and how things were not going as planned, I just focused on how to finish the project before Christmas Eve. And I did, not perfect, not exactly as I saw it in my mind, but nothing I cannot fix with a little more time and paint. And I happen to have both of those :D

For that project, it did not occur to me to "wait until...." and it still happened. Let's hope I can keep thinking this way.....just in case, I think I am going to print those words out and keep them in my pocket. :)

Thanks for reading (or skimming :D ) such a long post - I think we can call that one a Frog Queen Folly :D

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