Monday, 12 December 2016

Going great guns

This year I have really limited my art commissions to accommodate my own health needs however the ones I have drawn have been a wonderful challenge.

Had you asked me at the time that is probably not how I would have worded it!  One secret commission( for christmas so yet to be unveiled) proved very tricky.  Indeed the first subject, one of three, was restarted three times and once drawn the other two flowed like I had been unleashed.  On letting the commissioner know of my difficulties she found it spookily appropriate as the subject himself had been a tricky soul who took some time to settle and bond with!

I have one small commission to finish, another shhhh commission, that delights me.  Something about the bright shining face draws me literally in.

Whilst the drawing tends to envelope me completely whilst in the process I find the jewellery design both fast, invigorating and makes me strip down to the bones of a design.  It is also a delight to work alongside someone who I rely on totally.  All of my work is dependent on me and the jewellery design has been the first collaboration that is powered by a more dominant partner.  I may design however I am no silversmith so design I can I certainly can't make the design come alive ( baring using another method).  We work well as a team and its a process I have come to really enjoy.

I am surprised how much it has improved my eye and I have also shaken up my mouse like  promotional self.  I have always found it excruciatingly difficult to promote my work yet can happily promote others and because the jewellery is a collaborative piece I have grown.  The process of opening my Etsy shop was a challenge yet I enjoy the adrenalin hit when I sell a piece!

So I am looking forward to 2017 to see what challenges are brought to my door!

Time to review

Not unexpectedly I am having an extended break.  Literally broken haha.

With some time to plan and time to prepare the preparations for me were more about adjusting to new routine, pattern and potentially a new direction.

The time has allowed me to realise there is a reason I draw, a reason I am Petnanny and a reason I design jewellery.

I simply love it.

Not for me a full time artist life, the whimsical hard cut throat business is not for me.  The drawing is a need for me to put pencil to paper and to connect with strangers who tell me of their loved animals asking me to recreate what they say and loved about them.  The jewellery is about speed, leaving things out and learning to shave down to what is necessary.

The dogs well it isn't that simple is it.

I see all the new fresh faces full of drive, trained in social media, business studies and clear path towards a defined goal.  It could be a multifaceted company with employees and raining facilities, larger. bolder, brighter than before.

I revel in their enthusiasm and breath.  Could having no children change my prospective?  I have nothing to leave, no requirement to provide a start for children and subsequent generations.  That doesn't mean I don't want to leave a positive legacy.

For me I want the daily heady contact, training the dogs themselves, sharing moments.  I had no urge to teach people and that hasn't changed.  I miss the ones moved on, miss the ones passed on.  I look forward to their little foibles and funny ways.  I am lucky enough to enjoy that for years and it is valued above all else.

Of course as a business sometimes decisions have to be made a delicate balance between heart driven decisions and sensible head decisions however they aren't often wrong.

I wonder whether destiny chooses whether you are a small fish in a small pond, or a big fish in the sea swimming and thrusting for opportunities. No, I am sure it is the old nature, nurture equation and time reaching what you need to fulfil you.

During my break I have been training hard, always learning and trying to improve.  With all the phenomenal handlers, biologists, ecologists and trainers out there there is always one fundamental thread.

The relationship between you and your dog.

And for me that sums it up, the relationship between me the dog and the dog's family.

So I patiently heal, allow myself whatever time it takes and look forward to getting back to those I know and love.