Sunday, December 30, 2012

1K Cards Project December Update

December was the final month I had to work on my 1000 Cards Project, and resulted in 192 new cards and the completion of the project. Although I didn't rush, I didn't waste any of my creative time, so I worked just about every day on the project. Being so close to the end made it fun, too; under pressure I tend to become very creative.

I've put up a slideshow of all the cards, which includes 28 quilted and beaded, 18 in watercolor and 32 I made out of my old 2012 office calendar. I also made another 33 out of found objects and materials left over from other projects. I didn't plan to rely too heavily on photographs for this month, but I did want to document some events in my life, which translated to 31 photo cards covering the Thunderbirds air show we saw in October, how I spent Doomsday, my guy's birthday, one of my kid's concerts, senior night and Christmas morning. The only photo I didn't take myself was one of me and my kid on senior night.

I experimented with beading and paper weaving, did a few more cards with ink and made a little one-day journal. I wrote a lot of poems in December and turned an old letter to Santa into a series of cards. The 29 quilted cards I made were my favorite series; I pulled out all the stops and made them as fancy and fanciful as I wanted. I also made the last card of the project a tiny crazy quilt, as it pretty much defines me as an artist: a crazy quilter.

I haven't looked at everything yet; I want to take another day to process what I've done and enjoy the victory. Invoking hindsight now that it's over, it was a very tough project and I seriously underestimated how much work it would be. The artist trading card format is deceptively simple-looking; it's not easy to stick to that 2.5 X 3.5" limit. There were so many times I wanted to go bigger with a piece because I simply didn't have enough room to do what I really wanted.

On the upside, this project gave back 200% of what I put into it. Every month was an adventure, and the work kept my head in the right place. This is the first year in a long time that I've been able to cope with depression more constructively and effectively, too; having the daily creative challenge of the project kept me busy and focused. When the blues came, and they did more than once, I never felt swamped or dragged down for very long.

Friends have made some good suggestions about what I should do with the project now that it's finished, and I'm going to give all that some serious thought in the Spring. At present I just want to enjoy crossing the finish line.

My thanks to everyone who has been following the project for the last year here and on the author blog. Your kind words and support also kept me inspired and motivated, and I don't think I would have finished the project without you cheering me on.

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