Last Free Weekend!

Last Free Weekend!

     It’s the last free weekend of the rest of the year, that’s what this weekend has been for the past 16 years. It’s the weekend before the Toronto One of a Kind show, an 11 day marathon of a craft show. With 2 days to set up it’s a 13 day blitz that requires months and months of preparation. By the end of it you feel like you’ve been run over by a truck.

     For 16 years on this Saturday night I would be in the studio burning the midnight oil, in a cold sweat about not having enough work, not having the right work, no one will want what I’ve made, my booth still needs painting or graphics or new lights, I don’t have enough packaging, or a thousand other details that wake me up at 5 am. Many of my friends are still working at 5 am.

     It’s the culmination of months of working alone in the studio before spending 10 hours a day talking to people. So much solitude. So much people time.

     It’s the last weekend where I might squeeze in a dinner at a table at home with real food. All through that dinner half my mind will be elsewhere, already on the show floor or back in the studio.

     Welcome to 2020 where this weekend is just another 2 days.

     I eat every meal at my table. I’m well rested because I can sleep my 8 hours a night. I still have the hours of solitude in my studio just without the panic torching or panic list making, without any panic at all. I’m not missing any holiday parties because there are none to miss.

     The thing I will miss the most over the next 3 weeks is the camaraderie of the show, hanging with my maker community. I have met so many incredibly talented people and learnt so much about art forms I didn’t even know existed. I've chatted for days on end about where the work comes from, ideas, travel, books, small details of life. No matter how tiring it is to be on and upbeat for the public for 10 hours a day, I still come away from the whole experience energized. I will miss that.

     The whole panic of the prepping for the show? That I do NOT miss. Not one tiny bit. I am relishing reading books, taking my online classes, going for walks, cooking new food (OK, the cooking is getting a bit tiresome). I am also loving the fact that I can custom make pieces for people! I have the time to be creative and play! One lovely husband has given me carte blanche to create whatever I think his wife would like. As a long time collector she has so much of my work that coming up with new is a huge challenge, and the best part is that I have the time and can’t wait to make this!

     Is there a point to my rambling and pondering? Not really. It’s just an ordinary Saturday night and I’m puttering around and putting some words on paper. Nothing special happening tonight.

catherine winter

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