Maintaining a level

So, what I really had wanted to talk about yesterday was the state of my creative life. It is true that absolutely no non-ferry knitting has been done in weeks and weeks.  Why should that be so.

To some extent I think that I was set back much further than expected when Treacle left us. I sat around, not exactly moping but completely uninspired by anything at all. I simply sat. Like a pudding. Sat. Flat. Wasting my life and my time. Treacle was so much the life in the house – definitely the alpha male, he really ruled the roost with his incessant demands and complaints that one simply cannot get the staff these days. He left a hole behind him and it seems to have taken us a while to settle into it.

The DIY has been unsettling too – really disrupting routine and making everything so difficult, having to skirt piles of stuff all the time. All my jobs take so much longer at the moment.

That’s not enough to account for it though – my dislike for housework is well documented. I find it completely soul-destroying. It is a good thing that I exhibit no signs of house pride. Imagine how awful it would be to be house-proud or conscious of what others think, but to actually hate doing the job. Housework makes me shed real tears so I do as little of it as I can get by on and I don’t mind living in my own muck so that’s just fine. It leaves me plenty of time for more fulfilling tasks.

One of my fulfilling tasks is cooking and I know plenty of folk who feel about that the same way that I feel about housework. Whereas I will neglect the Dyson in favour of taking eight hours over a three course meal preparation, others will buy a ready meal from M&S and go polish the brass and silverware and dust their nooks and their crannies. It takes all types to make a world but somehow nobody sits in judgement on the M&S shoppers, whereas everybody has a nose to look down on the scruffier members of society. Funny, that.

I digress however. Having established that my time is not normally spent in tidying, scrubbing and polishing I readily confess that mostly it goes to my knitting, spinning or some other creative pursuit. If I am not knitting nor am I spinning, what am I doing instead. Well, at the moment it would seem to be photography.

With the possible imminent demise of Blipfoto, I took up with the 365Project crowd and what a wonderful bunch they are. There is a slightly different emphasis at 365 but it is just as engaging a community as Blipfoto, just as friendly, just as non-judgemental.  What it does have however is a far greater creative push and some very lively discussion groups that Blip has lacked. The groups existed but the implementation was poor and frankly they were a wasteland.

I am getting a great creative push from 365Project. There are several regular weekly or monthly “competitions”, challenges and themes — and most of them appeal to me, so I have been spending a lot of time in creating photographs, which is what really interests me, rather than simply taking them. It is almost as though I can see myself growing in real time and it is a lot of fun.

The weekly Get Pushed challenge pairs users together. The aim is for each to peruse the other’s portfolio and to then issue a challenge designed to stretch and develop the photographer.  The reason that I was taking photographs in town on Tuesday was not simply to share ideas with Mr L on my return home but also to fulfil the challenge issued by my partner, Mary Siegle for Get Pushed this week:

For your challenge this week, pick some aspect of this DIY project (even choosing kitchen units would qualify) and show that particular subject from 3 very different points of view. You can make a collage, or post several individual photos.

To be truthful, I am not doing too well on this challenge! I am hoping to have another go before the week is complete but the state of the DIY job is not proving to be conducive to Art.

GetPushedDIY

The Changing Seasons challenge has also been useful in giving me a creative push and I have found myself out with the camera more frequently – at least until the DIY turmoil began. I am running a little late on taking April’s images and also on writing up the March summary post.

I am loving the learning, I have to say.

My ferry trip to town on Tuesday was enlivened by the presence of some other Sanday ladies and the conversation featured largely our knitting progress and what to put into the Show. Frankly, it did not make me feel better about matters – at least not until one of them said that I could at least enter photographs, if not knitting this year.

The talk turned to photographs and M’s holiday. Lucky old M has recently been to parts Strange and Foreign for a number of weeks. She has been Down Under, and also to Dubai and Singapore. She has many photographs and has volunteered a slideshow for the good folk of the Afternoon Club, where I was recently engaged in a weaving demo. M was saying that she lacks up to date skills and was a little concerned about how to build the slideshow. I naturally offered my assistance.

Why did I do that. I do not know. I have never, ever made a photographic slideshow in my life!

So, that is where my time this week has been vanishing to. I have been making test shows and working out the best way to set this up for M. I have to say that Lightroom makes life very easy indeed!

This afternoon I shall be importing M’s images and turning them into a magnificent slideshow to entertain the Afternoon Club in May. Wish me luck and I shall let you know later how I get on with my newly-hatched skills.

Oh, and having said that I do not do housework – the scary notion of a proper housekeeper such as M visiting my lair has galvanised me into action. There is a strong aroma of bleach and cleaning fluid in these here parts. I cleaned windows! I washed dog splatters from walls! (A collie can shake mud off five feet up the wall, you know) I cleaned the loo! I even made a start on the conservatory’s winter accumulation of detritus.

I need a lie down. But I’d best get the hoover out first.

Recently, at the: Crooked House

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We are home again, after a month-long trip away. A trip during which I completely failed to get my laptop out. It was good to come home. We were driving along, close to Le Dorat at the time, when I felt that “aren’t we fortunate to live in such a lovely part of France” feeling washing over me. I had a sudden urge to invite all my friends to come and stay and to shareContinue readingBare Naked

A Month in France: Nothing is Lost

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I am lagging on the Month in the Country prompts, and lagging badly at that. I have a list of prompts t be caught up on and I shall be working my way through them here, or at Scattered Thoughts depending on where the post most naturally sits. I have elected to tackle the prompts not in date order necessarily but to seize upon prompts that offer me space in which to write down the things that I am feeling the need to say. Even if I need to crowbar it in. The thing is, I am going to continue to be short of time and space in which to write and so a two-for-one is useful and I hope to do as many of those as I can. Seems like a plan? … Continue readingA Month in France: Nothing is Lost

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One Comment

  1. spinninggill
    April 10, 2015
    Reply

    Love it! 🙂

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