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ANXIETY BEFORE STARTING A QUILT OR AN ARTWORK

Do you sit in your studio, faced with a new artwork and the insecurities start flowing in your mind. You’re asking yourself these questions: Why am I doing this? Will this artwork be successful? Why do I have butterflies in my stomach before I have even started? Who am I making this art for? Will other people like my work? The amount of self-doubt can be paralyzing and it will paralyze you completely if you don’t decide to ‘just get on with it’ and make art!


I think that artists are frightened to create something from nothing. I find it daunting to have a blank canvas in front of me and I know that soon I am going to embed fabric into it and it will become a part of me. Why are we as artists so afraid to create art and show it to the world? Could it be that we are scared to show the world a part of ourselves? In my years as a fibre artist, I have learned a couple of things that made my life easier and perhaps it could help you too.


I came across this great line in a book called "ART & FEAR" by David Bayles and Ted Orland that said, "ARTMAKING INVOLVES SKILL THAT CAN BE LEARNED." It goes on to say that ‘in large measure becoming an artist consists of learning to accept yourself, which makes your work personal and in following your own voice, which makes your work distinctive.’ 


A WONDERFUL READ FOR ARTISTS!


And you know what? That's something you can develop with help from others. Taking a few classes and learning from experienced artists can really boost your confidence and enrich your skills.


KNOWLEDGE OF MATERIALS


I believe every artist should have a solid understanding of the tools they're using. For me, that means knowing my drawing tools inside out and getting familiar with all the materials I'll be working with. It helps me feel less panicked when I'm facing my sewing machine, which I use as my drawing tool. Once I have that knowledge under my belt, I can focus on bringing my designs to life without worrying about technical hiccups.


A GOOD KNOWLEDGE OF MY ‘DRAWING TOOL’


So, my advice to fellow artists out there: make sure you're comfortable with your tools, take the time to understand yourself as an artist, explore different artistic skills and shake off that pre-artwork anxiety! You've got this!

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