Sunday, December 31, 2017

2017: A Year In Review

My creativity took a yarn-y spin this year. 3 crochet patterns, 1 knit pattern and 3/4 of a YA book that is 3rd in a series. I'm not going to punish myself for not getting the 1 book a year out in time. Normally, I'll be devastated. But ever since reading The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron, I've learned to embrace my seasons of creativity and not worry about the stuff I'm supposed to be creating but aren't. Instead, I'm embracing the stuff I'm creating and know that I'll get back to the other creative stuff that have been pushed to the back burner. 

To be honest, this is the biggest lesson I've learned this year: to be kind not only to others but most especially to myself and to embrace my creativity as it ebbs and flows and to help others find their own creative spirit. My 2017 word for the year was Kindness and I truly hoped I've lived up to the word. 

My 2018 word for the year is [Be] Brave. I'm not sure yet what the year of the Brave will bring and what lessons I'll be learning but I'm sure looking forward to it. For 2018, I also want to get back to watercoloring and playing the piano on a regular basis on top of crocheting and writing. I also want to get back to writing poetry, even though it's harder to market (hence I still have a day job) and I got one of those Strathmore Visual Journal: Watercolor as my 2018 journal instead of using Scrivener as I've been doing since 2016 that way, it will force me to sketch and watercolor without intimidating me with big, blank, white pages and I can also use it for any crochet/knit designs that pop in my head. 

Because I haven't done any watercolor painting since 2012, I looked at my previous watercolors and dug out my supplies. I also got new short-handled Master's Touch paintbrushes that can fit inside my art case and because I'm running low on paint tube stash, I decided to try using a full-pan set of 12 colors and got a brand that I haven't used before. I used to use Prang when I was first starting out then switched to Pentel Watercolor Tubes and when those tubes run out, I'll be using Hobby Lobby's Master's Touch. Of course, when you get a new set of watercolors, I couldn't help but create a color grid for it and I was really surprised by how vibrant the colors are compared to Pentel (I didn't make a color grid when I was using Prang). Now I can't wait to use them! So, in order to use up the old Pentel watercolors, I did some watercolor beginner exercises to refresh my memory. After doing the exercises, I feel better with my brush and water control.

Exercise 1 from Everyone's Guide to Watercolor Painting

Pentel Watercolor Color Grid

Master's Touch Watercolor Color Grid

 









How about you? How did you do with your 2017 goals? What are your 2018 goals? May you all have a prosperous New Year!


Books I've Read Since Last Blog Post



Currently Reading 

Lord Byron: Complete Works (Delphi Classics Poets Series, #6)


Currently Writing

Still working on Chapter 21 of Helena and the Dragon - Unfortunately, I haven't written a word since September.


Finished Objects

Strawberry Lace Pattern from the book Donna Kooler's Encyclopedia of Crochet - yarn used was Trenway Silks Kiku, in Tropical Bloom, 100% Spun Bombyx Silk, Lace weight; using a Clover Soft Touch Steel Hook 1.75mm





3 Hearts Bookmark - yarn used was Trendy Silks Kiku, in Tropical Bloom, 100% Spun Bombyx Silk, Lace weight, total amount used 5.5 yards; using a 1.75mm Clover Soft Touch Steel Hook, finished measurements are 5.25" long.





Galahad the Dragon by Laura J. Taylor of the Stitch Tower - yarn used was Yarn Bee Soft Secret Solids, 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight, used 143 yards/81 grams in Cocoa, 81 yards/89 grams in Seafoam, and 10 yards/6 grams in Mist; using a 4.0mm/US G Clover Soft Touch Hook.





Currently Crocheting

Elise Shawl by Evan Plevinski - yarn used was Louet North America Gems, 100% Merino Wool, Sport Weight in Crabapple; using a 5.5mm/US size I Clover Soft Touch Hook.




Announcements

Just in case, I would like to share the blogs and/or podcasts I'm really enjoying which are also listed on the side bar...and these are in the order I discovered them...hope you'll enjoy them too!

Lulu Loves Crochet Podcast