Quilt Testers In Action

Quilt Testers In Action


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Couple Of Lessons In Mindfulness

Maintaining focus has always been a problem for me. Sometimes I get too excited about what I'm doing, move to fast, and forget critical steps in what I am doing. Other times I let my mind drift, into a daydream, or more likely into the logistics of what needs to be done for the next event in my life. Either way, the project that I am working on, that I should be staying focused on, goes awry. I like the idea of mindfulness, and being fully present in the NOW, but I seem to constantly forget. Today I managed to experience this twice. 

The first time was when I was working on a Color Palette quilt. This was for the March Color Palette over at Three Creative Studios. I didn't have any ideas for that one at the time, but this week I went back and worked on it. I wanted the effect of a tiled picture frame, with a picture of my girls in the center. Unfortunately, I was thinking about the latest monkey wrench that my family has thrown into my plans for this week, and got ahead of myself. I actually trimmed two sides before quilting. I caught myself, did the quilting, and then finished the trimming. Unfortunately, my error meant that the small area outside the "tiles" was uneven. I had intended to add a dark binding, but thought that would emphasize the unevenness. Instead, I just zigzagged the edges, in a thread that matched the background. This is the final result.

Its not too visible in the picture, but above the girls I used thread sketching to add the word "sisters", and below the picture "friends". A cliche, perhaps, but also true. I'm very glad about that.

Now, for what you are really waiting for on Wednesday. I decide to try making a little film of the Old Man moving through the house to his food dish. This is when I got my second lesson in mindfulness for the day. The filming went well, and Weasley put on a good show. He was moving much faster than he usually does. I didn't realize till I uploaded it that the second half of the video is sideways. I often take pictures with the camera in that orientation, and apparently I turned the camera sideways without even giving it a thought.

I have no idea how to fix that, and I couldn't get Weasley to repeat his trek, so I uploaded it like this. Consider this a fair warning, if you decide to watch this, you may end up with a crick in your neck! You'll hear the radio on playing NPR in the background. I keep it on to help him orient himself in space. And the "thunk" you hear when he gets to the crate? That's what happens when he moves too fast. Good thing he seems to have a hard head.

As for my hard head, Well, I'm not sure. Having an air horn go off every so often would bring me back to the present, but that might be bad if I had the rotary cutter in my hand at the time. And it would probably make Weasley a nervous wreck. What tricks do you use to stay focused?


RosiePosie said...

I like the quilt of me and thing one. :) im sorry for throwing a monkey wrench into your plans!! You know you're happy about it though! :)

bunnits said...

Well, I haven't any suggestions for maintaining focus. It isn't one of my strong points. Maybe some other readers will have a few from which we can both benefit.

In the meantime, I really like the quilt. That's an adorable photo. And the video of Weasley warms my heart. Such a bun. Sending him a hug.

The Fab Furs said...

If you hadn't mentioned it, the quilt would have looked perfect (I suspect it does in person, too). Weasley was certainly moving well, but all that work for an empty food dish? Unless you want to become a list making maniac like the people on Lifehacker, focus is not the be-all and end-all of the creative, engaged mind.

Jade said...

It is the curse of the perfectionist creator; the picture in our head never seems to completely live up to the finished product, and we obsess about the flaws that no one sees except for us--even when we tell them about them.

I loved seeing Weasley in "action"; there is a regalness in his deliberate movements, yet at the same time this was the conversation I was hearing in my head:

"Ok, time to go back...no, wait, did I forget something?...no, I'm fine, let's go back...wait, what if I AM forgetting something? Perhaps I should check again...hmmm, no, I'm pretty sure I'm good here...ok, got that straightened out...oops, silly me, wrong turn, here we go...ooh, food dish--perhaps I forgot something there? hmmmmmm...oh, I think I did, good thing, too--I could use a snack..."

Crafty Green Poet said...

what a lovely video of Weasley, I like Jade's description of him as regal...

Lovely quilt too, I can't see any imperfections in it...

Focus? It's a difficult one, I don't think I've really got any tips

Michelle May (Shell) said...

I love the quilt girlfriend. It's lovely! As for focus...hmmm...nope, still working on that one myself. I know there is an answer though.
Amazing how well the fuzzy boy gets around without seeing. He's just precious.
xx, shell