Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Take It Further, May


Theme: What do you call what you do, or what do you call yourself in regard to what you do, or something like that. I actually have trouble answering "What do you do now that you're retired?" I'm not an artist; I don't have the training or the natural talent. I sew; I make quilts; I make "fiber art", whatever that is. All these answers produce glazed eyes.

I thought first I might be a dilattante, but the definition is someone who admires the arts or has a superficial knowledge. Maybe, but then lightening struck, and I thought: AMATEUR. Amateur: one who engages in a pursuit, study, science, or sport as a pastime rather than as a profession, and one lacking in experience and competence in an art or science. That's me. Also the etymology of amateur is from the root meaning to love, so an amateur does something for love. And being an English Major, I immediately thought of a giant red A like Hester Prynne's in The Scarlet Letter. So here's my A for "amateur", although it's not red. Two of my amateurish painted fabrics, a bit of equally amateurish quilting, and some beads. Done by the deadline!

15 comments:

fiona d said...

Wow! I never knew that amateur came from the same root as love. Your A for amateur is lovely - I especially like the way the colours work.

paulahewitt said...

I like this. Amateur tends to have negative connotations - Its nice to be proved wrong! Doing someting for the love of it - is a lovely idea. well done, and well said.

Karen Dianne Lee said...

Well this is lovely and I enjoy the colors.

Your writing brings up all sorts of thoughts on what being an "Artist" is. Its definitely doing something for the love of it, the passion, the addiction.

That said, I'd like to respectfully DISAGREE! You are a total Artist. Everything you do is artistic. I'll try to be quiet though.

Jumping up and down to make her point with love, *karendianne!

Doreen G said...

Paula took the words out of my mouth --I like your contribution this month and I don't think you are an amateur.

verobirdie said...

I think your definition would fit me too.
I remember suddenly that I wrote a piece as a school girl, about Amateur coming from amo and also meaning a person with a hobby. My conclusion was that the best part was the love dedicated to the hobby, and that the negative conotation was unfair :-)
Your work is beautiful!

EMBELLISHER said...

if you can make a quilt then you are not an amateur in my book. thanks for dropping by my blogand leaving a comment.

Nellie's Needles said...

Inspired! In my book, all your work deserves an "A".

Liz said...

Very well thought out and executed. I really like the concept of Amateur indicating doing something for the love of it! But you are definitely not an amateur in the sense that most people use the word. This work - like most of your work - is lovely, elegant, and deceptively simple!

Rian said...

I'd rather be an amateur any day. There's more room to grow. Besides, when you "turn pro" it only means you're doing it for money. We do it for the love of the craft.

I say "fabric artist." Fiber artist has always eluded me somehow, and I don't know why.

Debra said...

Well, it's all of us amateurs that make the pros look so good! *wink*

Lynne said...

Amateur has become almost derogatory so it's nice you've reclaimed it with such a lovely piece.

dee said...

wear that badge proudly-even though I think you're way better than that.

Ruth said...

Hi Kay - I have to agree with most of the crowd and say your work is not something made by what I would define as an amateur. That said, I am sending you a postcard from the swap on Stichin' Fingers and need your snail mail address. If you'd reply to this and let me know, I'll send your card right out.

diva of quilts said...

Your work is beautiful no matter what name you choose to call it. Personally I would say artist though I like your sentiments. ^_^

jenclair said...

What a great interpretation! How strange that a word that had such a positive original meaning has come to a negative interpretation. Maybe it is time for many of us to begin an attempt to elevate "amateur" back to its old glory. Rather like the negative connotation of "craft," a word that should also regain honor.

Beautifully done, Kay!