Commissions: weaving for a client (or learning basic addition the hard way)

The piece on my loom right now is a commission for a couple's home. Managing a commission demands some organization and I am fairly good at this. What I'm not as good at is estimating how much time the accumulated tasks on my calendar are going to take. Oh sure, I can come up with a fairly good estimate of how many hours creating a certain piece of art will take me. I can also estimate how long it'll take me to rebuild my website or do my accounting for the month or answer Monday's emails. 

What I can't seem to do effectively is ADD. I might have a separate number for all those things in my head, but when I add 2 + 3 + 4 hours, I tend to get 5 instead of 9. So though I'm sure that I can shoot six videos, weave a foot on the big tapestry, and manage all the online teaching in a week, the chances of that actually happening are really zero... due to that addition thing. (And perhaps my eternal sense of optimism.)

In my efforts to become better at this addition problem, I think I'll start blocking time on my Google calendar instead of just making a list of tasks that need to be accomplished for the day. Seems like a no-brainer actually.

Here is my progress with the commission. The design is similar to Emergence II which you may remember I recently visited in Craig, CO.

Rebecca Mezoff, Emergence II, collection of Colorado Northwestern Community College, 45 x 45 inches, hand-dyed wool tapestry

Rebecca Mezoff, Emergence II, collection of Colorado Northwestern Community College, 45 x 45 inches, hand-dyed wool tapestry

The clients really loved this piece and asked for a re-design a bit larger and in three panels with a particular element added from another tapestry design. I showed you some of my dye sample process as well as the sampler I wove so the clients could see what those yarn colors actually looked like woven HERE. They liked the colors and I proceeded to dye the large lots of yarn for the piece.

In the photo below, the cartoon on the left is the cartoon from Emergence II. I dug it out along with the dye book from that era to match the colors the clients liked. The cartoon on the right is for the new piece which will be Emergence VIII.

The weaving is well underway. The colors seem so bright to me now. I haven't used colors that are this saturated in many years so I'm holding my breath that it'll all come out okay in the end. They are rich, that's for sure.

RebeccaMezoff_EmergenceVIII.jpg

Though I do have a 60-inch tapestry loom, my preferred loom is my 45-inch Harrisville Rug Loom. I opted to use that loom for this piece because each panel is 18 inches wide and I could. That means that I can weave two panels at once and have a third one to do separately. I have to match the rate of color change in the gradation on the third panel. To get that as close as possible, I've added little tags along the edge noting where I changed colors. 

RebeccaMezoff_EmergenceVIII_tags.jpg

I'm forging ahead with a goal of completed weaving by mid-October. We'll see if that new calendar-block technique can get me there. 

Because 2 + 3 + 4 really does equal 9.

I weave on a countermarche loom. In this photo I'm standing on the loom bench with the camera up near the ceiling shooting straight down. The wooden bar in the middle of the photo is the top of the hanging beater. I also weave from the back, so what you see is the back side of the tapestry. #harrisvillerugloom

I weave on a countermarche loom. In this photo I'm standing on the loom bench with the camera up near the ceiling shooting straight down. The wooden bar in the middle of the photo is the top of the hanging beater. I also weave from the back, so what you see is the back side of the tapestry. #harrisvillerugloom