Week in Review 2021 – 07/30

Lifetime Learner

Each Friday morning I sift through my brain for what topic to focus on in this week’s post. Although I have spoken about things I am studying, practicing or exploring, it occurred to me that I have never used lifetime learning as a post focus. I sat down at my computer, opening sentence in mind, then wham, I was hit with unplanned learning moment. My WordPress functionality was compromised. I couldn’t create my post.

I’ve taught myself myself many different applications over the years. This is a screen shot from my WordPress site. I actually enjoy learning applications.

Instead I am writing on the same theme, but with a different slant. This morning’s experience was a typical example of learning unintentionally. I can bring a lot of enthusiasm, patience and joy when choosing to try something new I am eager to learn. However, when forced to cope with these dreaded words ” a plugin or theme caused a fatal error on your site”, let’s just say frustration, impatience and dread arrived in full force. Not what I planned on working on. Not what I feel like learning. I will get it sorted out. Just not quite yet. Prior learning allowed me to create a very temporary work around.

Pencil sketch of a young girl
This is the latest pencil drawing. Every week I select an online how to pencil drawing and follow along. It is a great way to improve my hand/eye coordination as well as absorb basic design principles such as shape, line, repetition, scale and more.

In fact work arounds lead me to some of the learning I do enjoy doing. For example, in my mission to prep for the open studio I will be hosting in November, I am working on significantly smaller pieces than my more typical 30″ – 72″ size range. This means thinking and creating differently. How do you get visual impact and detail into a small space? I find simplifying the image and letting the fabric do most of the work is key. When a detail is no bigger than the eraser tip of a pencil, it is time to embellish with stitch, paint or bead.

Egret standing on a rock surrounded by water
Egret is 8″ x 8″

This is what I did with Egret. I simplified the design removing all extraneous flotsam and jetsam from the water. Instead I chose a “water” fabric that suggested variety of underwater vegetation and debris lurking below. Every egret has a very fine graciously curving tail feather. I created this by stitching it in. I have zero patience for minuscule pieces even if I can fuse them. So for the beak and shading of the egret I painted these in with Inktense pencils. I used blue for the shading, because I learned, just this week, that if you want your whites to glow, shade with blue.

I am linking up with Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Fridays.

By Gwyned Trefethen

I am an artist who uses fabric, thread and miscellany to create designs gifted to me by my imagination.


    1. Big grin, here, Margaret. You know I’m naturally drawn to a more fussy approach. At the same time, I love a clean graphic look. Good to know the watery fabric works for you, too.

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