Friday, October 30, 2009

It's All About the Attitude

Whistling while you work. Making lemonade from lemons. I'll bet there are a ton of similar metaphors. (I'd love to hear your favorite!)

After a late night of dancing - and what a wonderful night it was - I had to arise in the wee hours of the morning to catch a shuttle to the airport. I had packed the day before so all I really needed to do was to was hop out of bed, brush my teeth and go. It could have been a rotten day.

A little aside on packing. Us traveling quilt teachers do an awful lot of schlepping stuff. I had two maxed out checked bags, a carry-on, and my "small personal item" which is a rolling briefcase that just barely fits under most airline seats. I wear black and wear my black little back-pack purse - hoping they won't count it as a third carry-on. We also end up shipping boxes to venues as well. The baggage fees have raised the costs for guilds to bring us in but the real struggle is being able to get all the lovely quilts and supplies there for you the students. I teach a lot of surface design classes - paint and foil and screen printing and such - to quilters. I like to spare them the time and cost of running around trying to find supplies that aren't readily available or already in their stash. That means I bring a LOT of stuff for my students. In fact - I even prepare kits so that in many of my classes all you have to show up with is a pair of scissors and a notebook! I use this kit for both "Bead It Like You Mean It" and "Surface Design Sampler Platter."

OK - back to the story. So I'm at the gate of the airport by 5am - people trickle in and plunk down and immediately fall asleep. I'm a morning person and a light sleeper so I didn't even try. I had Melanie Testa's book, "Inspired to Quilt" to read and it is an amazingly lovely book! And hey - with as many kids at home as I have, any quiet "alone" time I have is savored - even in an airport at 5am.

It gets better. Two young men and their mother walk in with instrument cases and one of them, instead of falling asleep, pulls out his guitar, and with a lovely soft voice begins to sing and play. I love acoustic music. I can't really read while it's playing because I get caught up in listening. So I pulled out my sketchbook, shifted to a better seat, and began to doodle, and sketch.

This is my rough sketch. I actually pulled out a pencil and worked harder to make a really nice sketch while he played. When I do this I often tear out the sketch and give it to the subject if it turns out decently. It did so I did. (The other sketch is a copy of an amazing drawing from "Inspired To Quilt".)

So check out the Malpass Brothers. Christopher, the young man on the right is the one that sang to all the morning sleepers. The music on their site has much more of an old-time vintage country sound than the airport that morning. It was lovely.