With this guerrilla marketing project, I’ve had the opportunity to fully realize how influential crafting has been on me. I am not referring to the fun aspect, but to the characteristics of crafting. Crafting isn’t easy as one may think. It isn’t just about cutting and pasting things down or stamping ready-made images down on paper. It is about the dedication and patience one needs to create, in a sense, a work of art.
The process of making a card, laying out a scrapbook page, or making a flower requires time, observation, careful consideration, and a gentle touch. It could take me several hours to make just one card! Why? Because the first phase when making a card (or anything really) is trial and error. It typically takes me 2-3 tries (and sometimes more!) before I get the measurements right, and even then something is bound to be off that requires me to backtrack. There are many layers and steps involved, so mistakes are easily created if one is careless. Also, I always have to be willing to change my idea should my original one fail.
Moreover, another aspect that makes crafting difficult is the number of things one can do! The options are endless. There’s dry embossing, heat embossing, crumpling, punching, distressing, die cutting, trimming, etc. Plus, there are rubber stamps, cling stamps, foam stamps, clear stamps, stencils, pattern paper, and etc, to help you design your project. It can take me a long time to decide what is right for what I want to make.
Then there is the construction. Before adhering everything together permanently, one has to make sure that it is put together correctly. Is the paper strip straight? Are the edges crisp? Are the petals nicely curved? Is the border the same all around? All these questions are running across my mind as I work.
Does it sound familiar? It should. These are the kinds of things artists go through as well. When we draw, we have to observe and contemplate our next move. Then there are the questions we ask ourselves every time. What do we want to draw? How will we draw it? What will the composition look like? Where will we start first? What medium should we use?
Evidently, being an artist requires diligence and commitment, and crafting has helped me hone these characteristics. I’ve learned to problem-solve, survey my process, adapt, and above all, be persistent.
If you still think crafting is a frivolous pastime, go try it and you’ll see exactly what I mean.