Aiming For Perfection

One side of Peter’s painted locker
(The figure is based on a Pre-Raphaelite
painting)

If you have read my profile and the blurb at the top of my blog you will see that I have said that I do not strive for perfection. My partner, Peter, has taken issue with me on several occasions about this statement. His argument is that one should always strive for perfection. I realised this morning that our disagreement arises because I have not properly explained what I mean.

Anemones – original watercolour by Christina

Peter and his mother are amazingly skilful artists. Their fine motor skills have to be seen to be believed – it’s a bit scary though, especially to me as mine are poor. They each have an innate ability to be beautifully neat and accurate in every detail, as can be seen in their respective works.

Portrait of Jessica – original oilpainting by Peter

Fine detail showing individual hairs

Christina used to do patchwork and quilting, as well as designing and making wedding dresses. Her stitching is exquisite, her attention to detail second to none.

Calligraphy by Christina

Then there is me. My fine motor skills are not very ‘fine’. I can sometimes be quite ham-fisted, and it shows in my work. That said, I do like to produce good work. However, I have no wish to produce items that look absolutely perfect. I like the fact that my work has stitches that vary in quality and other slight imperfections. I believe those imperfections are what add character to my work. You can see that it has been made by a person, not a machine. 

Detail of Landscape With Violin 
by Peter

We have a handmade Iranian rug on our living room floor. There are quite a few places where the pattern is not symmetrical but, for me, that adds to its beauty and appeal. Perhaps I have honed my tastes to suit my ability, so that I can accept what I have made. I cannot say, I simply don’t know, but the fact remains that I like quirkiness in some things.

So, when I say that I don’t aim for perfection, what I actually mean is that my aim is not to produce something that looks so perfect that it looks as though it was created by machine but, rather, to produce good work that shows the character of being handmade.

Peter’s Exquisite Painted Locker with figures derived
from Pre-Raphaelite paintings

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5 thoughts on “Aiming For Perfection

  1. It's a very interesting topic – perfection. I had a chat with my boy the other day about that, trying to explain to him that though it's great to strive for perfection in some ways, sometimes you simply have to let it go, otherwise it would prevent you from creating/doing/achieving anything in life. I believe that art (in our case, sewing) should be expressed in a way you feel it, see it. It should come from your heart and be driven by the desire to create, not to achieve perfection. You are doing wonderfully, Dina. You are exploring and learning, and trying new things, and you create work that is unique and has a handmade character. This is what important. Thank you for sharing beautiful works by Peter and Christina. Keep creating! 🙂

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