A professional longarm machine quilter for hire and some of the work I've done.
Monday was the monthly grocery day where I chauffeur my SIL and Tuesday was put it all away day. I don’t mind shopping, it’s the putting away that takes so much of my time. Yesterday was catch up after being gone a week day. Laundry, mopping, etc. Anyway here is more about my trip.
When I got the call that I was actually accepted into a spot in the Hollis Chatelain class I went from no hope to yippee! I could barely concentrate on finishing canning a batch of mushrooms.
Then, reality set in. How on earth was I going to pay for the class with no money? How would I purchase the supplies required with no money? How would I even get there without a car? What clothes would I wear? A clothes decision might seem simple to most people but I was still wearing clothes I had bought 15 years ago. My clothes were basically rags held together with thread. I told myself, “if I am meant to be in that class, it will happen” and stopped stressing about it. I finished my canning and started making a list of what I’d need.
Remember this quilt? A purple and green double wedding ring? Ok, maybe not. I just realized I haven’t posted this as a finish this year. I did show it in a photo back in July when I was working on it. Anyway, the money from this quilt helped pay for my trip to Loucon. The new owner had me promise that not one cent from the sale of the quilt would go for anything other than the trip. Yeah, she knows me really well. Actually, no one, not even my daughter, knew I was keeping this quilt as a savings account. If anyone knew I could sell it to get money then there would be a “crisis” of some sort and I’d give away the money. As long as everyone only saw a quilt and not a savings account then I was safe from any emergency need requests. The new owner agreed to wait about picking it up until I knew if I could go to the class or not.
Yes, the trip did cost a small fortune. Roughly around fifteen hundred after class fee, membership fee, art supplies, car rental, clothes, etc. I don’t have an exact figure. What? Oh. You want to know how much my trip cost me? Sorry, I miss understood. Hmm, let’s see. It cost me about nine months worth of non-edible groceries, two months of internet, four months of utilities, three months of phone service, a couple months of medication, and my entire clothes budget for the next fifteen years. Give or take a few dollars.
Or I could say it cost about one fourth the amount I need to get my teeth pulled and new dentures made. Or enough to buy a new top of the line fridge instead of the dorm size I currently use. Or, well just about anything. Just like in art, it’s all in the perspective. Let me put it this way. To someone living pay check to pay check one dollar means a whole lot more to them than it would to someone who can afford to purchase Hollis’ art. I hope I explained that right.
Would I do it again? No. But let me tell ya, my decision has nothing at all to do with the artist, the class, or the people. I’m very happy I got to go and happy with what I learned. I made several new friends and had a great time. My decision is about the economics of taking an in person class. Even if I had somehow gotten a scholarship to pay for the class there would have been many other expenses associated with going away for a class. Art supplies are not cheap. I don’t know how artists can afford to become artists. Renting a car is very expensive. Paying rent at an away place is another expense. So, you see for me it is not practical to take an away class. I think I need to stay with online classes, or DVD classes, or classes I can actually get to by city bus and be back home at night.
I’m very happy I went though. I don’t know what art I want to create unless I give some different techniques a try. I had to know if painting interested me. Who knows, I could have come home ready to start painting fabrics. I did learn that I’m happier drawing than painting. I guess that’s why I like quilting so much. Quilting is like drawing.
To be continued.