Here's your curated list of inspiration for the first week of November (well, for you second week of November), following the format from last week's post - which I think worked quite well. If you haven't already, don't forget to set your clocks back an hour.
I've been looking through hundreds of pictures of fall leaves in preparation for my workshop on the 19th, and I came across this beauty. It's so bold and colorful and I'd even say whimsical, but look closely at the colors in the photo. I used the eyedropper tool to find the various colors that repeat throughout the photo and oddly enough, no orange or brown! You can have gorgeous autumnal decor without going the traditional cliche route of orange, yellow, brown if you love bright, bold colors like I do. Also, I want this to look like my back yard.
Speaking of fall leaves, since Thanksgiving will soon be upon us, I thought you might enjoy these conversation starters for the dinner table. Especially if you have to share that table with people you'd rather not discuss certain topics (such as your last medical check-up or who you voted for or why you haven't been to church in a number of years). Get these to help you steer the conversation in the right direction and away from way-too-personal matters.
I know Radiohead is a love'em or hate'em group (I personally love'em mostly, not everything). But I love this song because it's the perfect pace for needle felting - yes, I've listened to it on repeat a few times while I work - and because stop-motion animation. One of my goals still is to create a needle-felted stop motion animation one of these days. Which leads me to the next thing.
Inspirational Felt Art
This is one of the most beautiful stop-motion animation videos using felt that I've ever seen, and a keeper in my collection of felt inspiration. I really want to do something like this one day.
I love Patience Brewster's work (as you know, I love all things whimsical). Patience started out as an illustrator and moved on to making figurines, in particular Christmas ornaments. She used to sell through wholesale and other shops but recently cut back to just selling limited handmade/painted items instead of having them mass produced. I find her personal story and success inspiring, especially since she was able to make it work as a work-at-home stay-at-home mom with two little ones at her side, and continue spreading joy and optimism despite going through personal hardships.
There are some gorgeous animations coming from overseas, this one included. In fact, I'd say the majority of my favorite animated films are not made in the US. Maybe it's because I grew up with Disney (and then Pixar), that I'm used to the styles here - and therefore not quite so inspiring. But I also think it's because Disney, Pixar, Dreamworks have such a huge hold over the market, we're not really going to see many different styles out there unless we look elsewhere. Luckily this movie is in English so you can enjoy the art and animation without having to spend half the time reading.
For my inspirational videos, I'm going to continue sharing TED talks, because they really put me in the right mindset when I want to get motivated to do some work. In any case, I know that this is an old one, but this is the video that marked the point when my husband and I decided that we would homeschool our children, and probably one of my top favorite TED talks of all time. However, this speaks to all of us, even those of us in school or having gone through the public school system. My favorite quote from this talk: "If you're not prepared to be wrong, you will never come up with anything original."
Inspirational True Story
Bethany Hamilton is truly an inspiration (there's even a movie about her). As a parent, the thing I love is that she was allowed to pursue her dreams of becoming a pro-surfer. I'm also inspired by the fact that despite she was attacked by a shark and lost her arm, that did not keep her away from her passion. Granted, you're not likely to lose any limbs while crafting, in needle felting you stab your hands a bit, but the point is to not to let setbacks keep you from moving forward, whatever they may be. This came to mind because my daughter who's been begging to learn how to needle felt DID stab herself in the hand and was quite upset by it. An adult has the ability to continue after a minor injury like that, but to a 4 year old it's a big deal and a learning lesson to pick herself back up and keep going (when she's ready). We all have something that is most likely to keep us from moving forward, maybe something that happens in our personal lives, or being a creative, trying to get work and receiving a rejection letter or criticism, etc. Point is to use these setbacks as stepping stones (like the quote at the top of the post) and keep moving forward. If a shark wasn't able to keep Bethany from surfing, what's stopping you?
I love DIY projects, and I'm pretty sure I can make just about anything if I put my mind to it. If you love DIY as much as I do, you'll find some awesome projects on here. Thing is, they're not projects that look like someone just hacked together using pallet boards and duct tape to put on instructables (though there's plenty on there that are amazing), these actually look amazing as if you bought it from a store. I could waste all day on this site thinking about how I'm going to make all these things and redo my entire home.