I was thinking about my design head the other day…wondering where my love of lines, color, shadows – in all forms of artistry (architecture, painting, sculpture, photography…) comes from. My mother was a tortured artist. For most of her life, her psyche locked up the frustrated landscape painter, nestled in her soul. In her last few years, the painter escaped (with greater or lesser results…some landscapes were cringeworthy, most portraits were worse) but she found a way to express herself and for a while, it helped her tame her demons. Not the most ferocious in the bunch, but some of the lesser adversaries.
When I started my blog anew last summer, I was intentional about including a ‘design’ element in periodic posts. It’s a part of my identity. I think I started off fairly strong, highlighting my love of interior and fashion design – a blend of vintage this-and-that, antiques and squeaky-clean newness – all from the standpoint of Vicki being Vicki – whether in my choice of home environment or wardrobe. I’ve noticed recently that I’ve let some of that go and I think I know why:
- We have a massive home improvement project in motion. Most of the downstairs of our home is ground zero and while the mess is maddening, I’m holding up fairly well. Thanks for asking! 😉Why is this the case, for tightly wound “Moi” to feel so light and breezy amidst the mess? I think it’s this: I adore having the plans and drawings taped up here and there, reminding me that the hubster and I spent 18 months laboriously and painstakingly choosing – you name it – cabinets, knobs, intricate tin ceiling tiles, the best mesh for cabinet inserts, tile that required nine days of pattern-laying and matching to satisfy the hubs and our designer friend. Thanks to them I could be more laid back about the tile – I trusted their double-teamed wisdom.
- My most recent project with Wynne Leon, “The Heart of the Matter” provided an opportunity for me to flex my neglected design head. I’m not a graphic designer and never will be, but the fun I’ve had tinkering with posts for Instagram – allowing myself to read my fellow bloggers’ work and pause to consider the colors and designs that might showcase their beautiful work in the best possible social media light. Such fun! However, our DD (dear daughter) heaved a heavy ‘oh no’ when she heard I slid into this duty. I’m the least likely player, for sure, from a skills perspective – and yet the opportunity to play with color and images? I was willing to learn. Willing to take a risk. Have I made some mistakes? Good Lord, yes. So many – but with each ‘oops’ I Iearned. Not so much that I might not repeat the same silly boo-boos, but enough for tightly wound Vicki to sigh, “It’s okay. No one asked for perfect.”
Those two things – home design fun and a dive into graphic arts – are feeding my visual appetite. For now. I suspect Brian’s recent post on HoTM describing the powerful reaction he had to Thomas Cole’s “The Voyage of Life” will send me back into the saddle of writing about artists, artistry, soon enough – but for now, I’m relieved. I didn’t lose a part of myself – I just tweaked and pivoted. That’s a pretty great reminder – that I can find new facets of myself. Old me in new forms. 😉
For fun? Here’s a peek at one of the designs in motion for our laundry room…don’t tell my designer friend Jen that I shared – she’d be mad! 😎 And…from the first month of the brand-new Heart of the Matter blog, I’m sharing a mosaic which reflects the fun I’ve had highlighting the work of my blogging buds:
Here’s to finding the parts of ourselves that might be AWOL from time to time. It feels good to reconnect!