Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Exercises and Crafty Professional Development

Two days ago, I started my workday with non-work-related creative work. That's to say, I did a spot of colouring with some new brush-tip markers that I'd bought myself for a treat. It had been ages since I'd just sat and coloured for a bit, and it was fun. What followed was a rather productive day with little or no procrastination, so I'm thinking I'm going to try for a little creative Professional Development in the mornings for about a half hour.

Yesterday, I took that time to finally do the Mighty Ugly Exercise from the book Make it Mighty Ugly by Kim Werker.

Now, if you don't know about this book, follow this link, read about it, and then come back, I'll be waiting right here.

I know, great stuff, right?

So, here are the results of my making something ugly on purpose exercise:

I decided to use a glue gun for all the work in order to thwart my perfectionist tendencies that would have demanded for me to use the opportunity to practice making my stitches more even. Sure it would have been good practice, but that's not the point of the exercise.

I used fabric scraps of printed polar fleece, bits of felt, yarn from an early dyeing project that was over-agitated (I used it for both hair and stuffing). A failed crochet scarf that died it's final death in the washing machine became a jacket, with Really Ugly Trim for a belt. I think the glowing eyes are rather creepy too.

Name and backstory though? I fell firmly in the camp of those who didn't even start thinking about that until the creature was done.

So today's morning project is: Name and Backstory.

One day, a Swamp Creature came out of the swamp, and decided to have a look around. She saw people rushing to and fro, riding bicycles, walking to work, and driving cars. She thought the cars looked scary, and wasn't completely sure about the bicycles either, but she liked how the walking people looked like they had a sense of purpose. So, she found herself some clothes and a wig, and joined up with one of those groups.

Our Swamp Creature, who decided that her name would be Loomis (because she rather liked the sound of it), ended up with a group of data entry clerks. Thinking she was the new temp, they issued her a key card and found her a desk.

Luckily, Loomis was a quick study, and she sorted out how to type, and how to enter the forms into the computer. It was quite satisfying being busy all day, and at the end of the day, she returned to the swamp.

Loomis is mostly happy most of the time, but can't quite shake the idea that she doesn't quite belong. The other employees don't seem to really notice that she doesn't really belong there, but they don't quite include her either. They're not really sure what's odd about her, but of course, the glowing eyes and vague formlessness do tend to make one uneasy. Of course, she gets her work done neatly and on time, so they are reasonably content with her.

Loomis hopes to travel further afield one day, but at the moment just works hard at passing as a data entry clerk, and is saving up for a nice little apartment that is not too far from the swamp. She enjoys walking around purposefully.

And there you have it. Quite roughly thrown together, but then again, so is Loomis. If I've learned anything this week, it's that a half-hour at the start of the day is plenty of time to do something I've been meaning to get around to doing, so why not just go ahead and do it. Also, I've been reminded just how important it is to stop and do something fun for a little while now and again.

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