The Butterfly Project


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Last week my art sisters and I got together for a Holiday luncheon.  I was the one who offered to host the  December luncheon, and loved planning, and decorating for it.  One of the things we had decided to do this year was have a gift exchange.  This was a great idea, and one that we had never done prior to this year.  Every once in a while one of us would ask the other if they had decided on what to make?  The answer usually being, they hadn’t decided, or they were having trouble getting their chosen project to pull together!  Funny, I was having the same trouble!  We always say there isn’t pressure, but we all know differently.  It seems when we are creating something for someone special such as one of  our “Artsie Fartsie Girls,”  it becomes increasingly more difficult.  I personally wanted it to be just right, after all it’s going to another artist!  I have a standard to uphold you know!

Over the last month, my chosen project for this gift, had  changed  at least three times.  Knowing that this seems to be my MO, I promptly left it for the last week, only to stress out about getting it completed in time!

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After the final decision was made, all the materials were pulled out and the project began.  This time the decision was to use canvas, canvas duck fabric, and/or  burlap.  I had decided to create butterflies in fabric, gessoing, painting, and decorating them.  It seemed easy enough, so I sketched out some different shapes, enlarged them on the scanner, and traced them out.  The butterflies traced from a roll of art canvas were cut out first, and after realizing when they were painted, they curled up, I quickly decided to paint before cutting!  The canvas duck, and burlap were painted next.  I left a margin around the canvas duck butterfly so I could put fringe on the edges.  Once that was completed, they were embellished with jewels, and hung with ribbon!  I think the results were fun, and magical!

The artist canvas butterflies presented another challenge – they seemed stiff, and it took a while for me to get into them.  Little at a time, they became interesting, each one being just a little different from the last, and having a unique personality!

The last butterfly was a total experiment on burlap.  I always love burlap, and the thought of creating a butterfly out of something so textured,  intrigued me for sure.  This was the last of my project and as I worked on it, I felt a resistance.  An unwillingness to be adorned.  Is that even possible?  A burlap butterfly with an attitude!  

After playing with butterflies for more than a week, finally most were finished.  The remainder of butterflies would have to wait until I regained enough energy to tackle those pesky little creatures!  The few left would most likely be pretty easy, they were not going to an art friend, and therefore not under as much scrutiny.  Is that ego raising its ugly head?  I think it is!

At the luncheon we all carefully drew names, and picked up our gift.  Between five artists, the little treasures were amazing and each one of us loved this beautiful gift created by one of our closest art friends.  Throughout the day, we would all stop to realize the blessings we were given by having each other for support, and creative energy!

Our day was a huge success, all of us leaving with hearts full, and a renewed creative energy for the New Year.

A Penny for Your Thoughts...

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