I had a client come by my studio today to commission a wedding gift. She brought the dried bridal bouquet, a Victorian oval frame, antique lace, and hand made embroidered adornments. She had an idea of the words she wanted in the piece, and the general color scheme. We then spent some time looking through my handmade paper collection until we found papers she wanted me to incorporate into he mat. She brought pictures from the wedding and examples of Victorian art that she liked. Her goal was for all this to combine together into one cohesive gift for the bride and groom.

I am the one who has the challenge of making all this memorabilia a family heirloom. This one is WAY out of my comfort zone. I have never worked with an oval frame or mat. I have little or no experience working with dried flowers. I have never created a Victorian looking piece, and antique lace has never been incorporated into any of my work. So why in the world would this client come to me to create something? She has brought my work before and enjoys seeing it every day. She has been in my studio on numerous occasions, so she understands the creativity that pours out of our space. She was excited to bring me her treasures to see what I could create. 

Knowing that all of this ‘stuff’ is not part of my normal creative day, why would I take on this project? As we reviewed what she brought, I could ‘see’ the piece developing in my mind. I could see how I could pull it all together into a cohesive, framed work of art. I greatly appreciated her confidence in my work, and I was intrigued by the challenge. So after spending about forty-five minutes with her, we set a price and deadline. I plan to have it done by the end of the month. 

Sometimes we know what we are doing because we have done it before. Sometimes we have a good idea and have to work out the kinks while we are working. Sometimes we have to break out of our comfort zone and go where we are not on solid ground. Sometimes we move forward because someone else believes we can do it. No matter how you look at it, going outside of your comfort zone is a bit unnerving. It means risking failure, disappointment, and mess. It also means pushing your skills to another level. It means letting go of who you are to create the person you might become. It means learning that you are capable of so much more than you currently know…so make the step outside of the comfort to become someone new. 

FYI – when I have the piece done I will post again on the final project.