Thursday, February 9, 2017

Keeping it Real

So this is a keeping it real post for those that think creativity is always easy and fun. Most of the time, yes, but not always. 

I've been struggling with ideas for something new and different for our etsy shop, store booth, and upcoming Backwood's Marketplace and history gathering. If you follow along on Facebook or Instagram, you might have seen some of my church pictures or paintings. The church pictures were taken from my work and life on the Back Roads of Upshur County. I was inspired by old church paintings I have seen, but didn't want to paint, just a random or made up church, so I decided to paint some based on the local churches, that I had photographed. 

I'm trying to figure out how to best display them and unique ways to share the old churches. I painted them on canvasses, that were too big to fit in my scanner at home. One of my trips to Longview (45 minutes away), I found a place to scan them to my flash drive. Home later that night, I got them on my computer, but extracting the PDFs and saving as a picture (so I can resize and print) was no easy task. Figuring out the settings on my new printer, so I can mirror the image made me want to pull my hair out or throw a not so minor temper tantrum. 

Finally, pictures printed, but let me back track to finding, cutting, sanding boards for the photos to be transferred to. I found one scrap board, brought it inside and prepped it (sanded and gel medium applied) and placed picture on the board to let dry 8 hours+. Back outdoors to cut more boards, because I really need to be productive and assembly line these babies, to be most efficient with my time. Jeff comes to assist and 20 boards were  cut to size. 

Back inside, I get 8 more churches on boards to dry, before leaving for afternoon obligations. Home later in the evening, I started removing the paper with a wet rag. To my dismay, my church wasn't very visible. I wanted to cry. I had 8 more churches that were probably wasted on a failed new-to-me technique. 

I might have got a couple of "you should have just done one board to experiment, first, before you did 9..." I laid on my bed, upset, near tears again, staring at the ceiling fan and realizing I need to dust...

Anyways, I leave the others. Their 8 hours to overnight drying time was not complete and I was depressed about my ugly board and went to bed. 

I was gone almost all day to market, meetings, picking up supplies, etc.
After supper, I decided to start peeling the paper off the remaining 8 pieces. Wet it down, scrape, scrape, and scrape some more and pull up my stool to the kitchen sink, because this is no short process and my feet are tired. 

Much to my excitement and relief at 10:30 at night, the other churches were much more visible on the other 8 boards. That's when I realized that the first one was made on a different board. Remember, I said I found a scrap board for the first one. 

Here's the thing, if I hadn't had anxiety, been impatient, and felt pushed to get some production done, I would have just done the one board as a test (as others suggested I should've done), been dissatisfied with the results and never made another one, BUT that's not what I did! Now I've got 8 churches (2 of each different church), transferred to pecan wood, waiting to be sealed. 

I want to include a bit of the history on the back side of each piece and I'll probably print some to frame, or try a few other techniques, when I get a chance. I'm also wanting to photograph and paint a few more of the old churches in the area. Right now, I've got wedding orders that I've got to get busy on, so this will be continued at a later date... But first, I need tea... 

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