A Thanksgiving for Creative Practice

On Friday I worked in my studio on the wool quilt from 3 PM to 1 AM. As I watched the pattern unfold, I was completely absorbed in the flow of my work, the gift of my talent, the sureness of my skill.

Questions of complexity and simplicity arose. I watched as I decided to choose the path of complexity. I took note as it led me astray and I lost my sense of direction.

Knowledge is gained during the process of discovering patterns. I love this about quilt making. Residing in a practice to which I’ve  dedicated 20 years is simultaneously humbling, quietly exhilarating, and deeply satisfying.

At one point on Friday I became overwhelmed with gratitude. When I am alone in my studio practicing my craft, it is between me and God as My Witness. It is not about external success, recognition or money. It’s about the truth of who I am in relationship to my self, to others, to my craft and to my being in the world.

The ability to practice my creativity is not something to be taken for granted – although I often do. And when I do, I usually feel regret. I tell myself I should be doing something more useful like being a nurse, or making more money… During these times I forget what it means to be an artist. I loose sight of the reward.

I am always thankful when I rediscover the reward and am reminded again of my purpose, the rhythm of my attention.  Just as I am thankful for you, the person reading my story right now, for being my witness.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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11 Responses to A Thanksgiving for Creative Practice

  1. Pingback: wool quilt | Knitting For Beginners

  2. deborah says:

    You and your work are such an inspiration. You have echoed my own thoughts about how i am feeling about the last four days I have been able to work in my own studio. Thank you for how you share yourself and your work.

  3. Marjon says:

    I can so much relate to what you are writing. I used to be a professional classical musician, unfortunately I became ill and had to stop playing the flute. I sort of lost my art, but now I know that I only lost the way I could express my art, my talent, since I’ve started quilting a year ago. I found that talent never leaves you, and I am so thankful for that. Quilting is just like music about colour, dimensions, dynamic, rhythm….it seems so different, yet is so much the same because it all comes from that one gift of God, the talent that you’ve got. And I feel grateful and humble as well about that. Please keep writing these wonderful words, because they are so true, and you know how to put your feelings in words so well. Thank you for writing them!

    • Sherri Lynn Wood says:

      I’m glad you’ve discovered quilt making. I agree – it has so much in common with music. I’m sure your background in music will be a huge resource for your quilt making.

  4. Nancy l says:

    Sigh.. Bless you . Hope you received my contribution to your mercy project .

  5. And I thank you for sharing your creativity and the way you feel it with us!

  6. anna says:

    i am constantly surprised and humbled by how much my own experience and struggle as an artist is echoed in others. why do we feel we are ever alone? gah. thank you for sharing your perspective – today more than others I guess i needed to remember, and be thankful.

  7. Heather says:

    So true. I left relative success in the “art world” but will never stop making art, for the reasons you describe so well.

  8. Lynda M O says:

    Thanks for appreciating those who read you.

    Happy Holidays….

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