Creative Process


It is likely that you have already seen this captioned audio of Ira Glass discussing the creative process. I think I watch it every 6 months or so. And every time, it speaks to me.

This week, this speaks to me with regards to my pattern writing. As I am going back through my earlier patterns and making them have a consistent format, I can see the evolution of my pattern writing skills. And I don’t think my work is quite at the level of my ambitions, the effort I have put in so far has brought it closer to closing that gap.

This video has also spoken to me about quilt piecing, straight line quilting, free motion quilting, hand binding, machine binding, blogging, commenting on blogs, and so many other aspects of this creative venture in the past. Thanks for being a part of that journey and wading the waters with me.

close the gap

So what are your goals and ambitions? Where can you celebrate success and where do you want to focus your attention on closing the gap next?


  • Wow, that sounds like me, always criticizing my work, hahahaha! And I got piles of work not finished as I have not got the knowledge as I tell myself. So now I take his attitude and no worries!! Thank you for this, cheers me up!

  • Interesting, I can see where he is coming from, and I agree it is very inspirational. Personally for me, I believe with the quote I heard years ago, goals are like stars in the sky, you may not reach them, but they help you to navigate.

  • This seems the week for inspiration. A quote on the opinion page (they always pick something inspiring to put at the top) from Jim Rohn: “Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.” I like Ira Glass’s quote too. Thank you for sharing.

  • Good Morning Yvonne! Wow! This question I have to think about to truly answer. In just saying, I know that I want to learn how to create a Hand Embroidery Pattern that could be used to make a beautiful quilt. Yet, I know my fears hold me back. One of the reasons I get so much from reading your posts (your courage) and from discovering so many directions that can be taken. Thank you for sharing! Have a fantastic creative day!

  • Thanks for sharing Yvonne. I saw this elsewhere recently and it is something that I should revisit regularly. I really like Ira Glass and listen to him often on NPR.

  • I hadn’t seen this before. I love the sentiment behind it.
    I think I am still waiting for my taste to become killer, however. 🙂
    My ambitions and goals are mostly focused on rediscovering my get-up-and-go and adding the pep back to my life. I would love to learn a musical instrument but am hesitant to start classes until I know I have the time to adequately practise.

  • I hadn’t see this before but it’s a great reminder to keep learning and keep improving. My current goal is to tackle some of the quilting techniques I put off tackling.

  • That was excellent! Thanks so much. When my daughter who has been working toward a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Illustration would panic about her choice and wonder how an artist can make a living in this world I would send her this clip of Alan Watts. While they aren’t quite the same topic there are some similar themes that if you love it, do it. The skill will come when you invest time that equals your love. We are less than a month out from my daughter getting that degree and I am so proud that she had the guts to follow her heart despite the cries of society that the type of contribution she wants to make isn’t as valued or needed as STEM. She actually had a stranger stop her on the street in front of the school one day, she was easy to identify as an art student with her gigantic portfolio and blue hair, and that stranger berated her for making a stupid choice that would lead her to be nothing more than a drain on society. Pursuing the things you love takes courage whether it’s a career or a hobby and getting through that period of work when there is always that error and there is always a mistake can be brutal to self confidence.

  • My one and only goal is to be able to make quilts all day. All of the stuff I do that is extraneous is just about getting to the point where I can go to work in the morning and make quilts and come home to my family at the end of the day.

  • This is fantastic. Thank you for sharing such wise words. I feel like I’m finally getting out of that and really feeling confident about my work, almost every time.

  • Hi Yvonne: I too enjoy this clip but I first saw/heard this version

    I keep pretty good track of all the quilts I make; that is a record of my body of work (to date). Even just looking at that spreadsheet is a help in examining my progress.

  • One of my goals was to use up my older fabric stash that I inherited 11 years ago. It once took up a huge gorilla shelf in the closet. I have made many quilts and des tasted some fabric over the years, and all the fabric left from that will fit in a small laundry basket. I is fun seeing the pile get smaller and smaller.

  • Thanks for sharing this. I’ve never heard it before and I’ve bookmarked it and will make a point to listen to it again and again. It gives me quite a bit to think about.

I really appreciate the time and thought you take to comment, and I look forward to conversing with you. :)