Today I made an array of beautiful hourglass blocks, shimmering like stained glass. Stitched into borders and positioned on my design wall, surrounding my quilt center, they await my decision. Attach them? Or not? The colors are clear. The sizing was perfect. The balance of color and value is as I want. And yet there is something wrong that I haven’t identified yet. And because I don’t know what it is, I don’t know how to fix it.
Sister Corita Kent, in Rule #8 for the Art Department of the Immaculate Heart College, said, “DON’T TRY TO CREATE AND ANALYSE AT THE SAME TIME. THEY’RE DIFFERENT PROCESSES.”
I know this is true. I know my best work occurs when my intellectual understanding and my inspiration meet at the same place as my technical skills. However, they don’t all get to the corner at the same time. Instead, there is usually one of them lagging behind while the others wait, not so patiently, tapping their toes and jingling the keys in their pockets.
In the morning I may know just what to do. Those jingling keys will have disturbed my sleep, leaving time for thoughts to shift between analysis and creative problem solving. In the end, I’ll resort to Rule #6: “NOTHING IS A MISTAKE. THERE’S NO WIN AND NO FAIL. THERE’S ONLY MAKE.”