29 October, 2013

Flustered Flowers: Floral Art (Wk. 2)

Last Tuesday in my floral art class I became flustered and agitated while completing my arrangement. Somehow putting an unnecessary pressure on myself to perform.  At some point during the class it changed from being fun to something stressful. I will pin point my feelings throughout the night for you:

(1) rushed (2) confident (3) embarrassed (4) confused and (5) disappointed. 


Going straight from work to helping out my mum in Lidcome, I found myself rushing to get to the floral art class. I squeezed in dinner while I drove. Dangerous stuff.  Once again I was one of the last people to arrive. I paced to the back of the room and hurriedly organised my things.


Being so proud of myself last week I was very excited to do another arrangement. I was quite confident that I could perfect anything our teacher (Michelle) set for us. What I forgot to consider was that I had only completed ONE class of floral art. ONE class Claire...

We started the class by choosing the colours of our pots.
Then we received our Oasis (green sponge) and gently
pushed it into the pot leaving a couple cm above the top of
the pot so that we could stick the foliage in on the sides. 

Then we were given our first set of flowers - these Mini Gerberas.
I liked this bright orange colour but I think I will try to get
 to the class earlier so I can sit at the front. This way I can
get first pick of the flowers and have a better view.  


While we were wiring our Mini Gerberas I was putting way too much pressure onto the flowers, trying to get perfect tight swirls. In this process I ended up snapping one of my flower stems. I was shocked that I made this mistake. I broke the poor Gerbera just as Michelle was saying, "make sure you are gentle with the flowers." I timidly asked for parafilm (tape) and was shaking as I tried to restore the stem.

This is how you begin wiring a flower.
This is where the 'neck' of the flower is.
From here you simply wrap the wire around and around. 

Here is an image of the flowers that survived.

And here is my poor snapped stem.
All bandaged up after I pretty much killed it.


From here on in my nerves kicked in and I began to feel the pressure. We used two types of foliage in our arrangements last week. However, being at the back of the class meant that I missed out on the Viburnum foliage everyone else received. Michelle had to get a different kind of foliage from her car that could be used as a substitute. While I waited for her to return, I prepared the second type foliage - Dusty Miller.

This is the Dusty Miller. It is a grey, velvety plant that
can last a long time. If it becomes limp it can be
restored by constant watering.

When I finally received all my foliage I quickly stuck them
into my Oasis sponge. We alternated the green and grey foliage
to create contrast.

This was our second feature flower the Alstroemeria. 

The Alstroemeria is a beautiful multi coloured and layered
flower. They look very nice in a mass of three or so
bunches. It is also quite inexpensive.

While I was in the middle of placing my foliage in my Oasis sponge, the rest of the class was already moving onto the next step. Michelle showed the class how to place the Mini Gerberas into the arrangement. Lagging behind and also being at the back of the classroom, I didn't have a very good view.

She went on and on about having the flowers in a triangular formation. And that the placement of the rest of the flowers should be in line with this triangle shape. Now if this doesn't make sense to you, don't worry! I had no clue either, and ended up sticking the flowers in randomly.

I looked at the front at Michelle's pot then back at mine, looked at the arrangements around me then back at mine. I was literally huffing and puffing, sighing here and there trying my hardest to make my flowers look as perfect as they could be.


At the end of the lesson I slowly packed up my things and cleaned my table. I kept my head down because I didn't want to see what everyone else had produced.

Looking at what I created all I could think was
'what a mess...'
We also learnt how to make the ribbon you can see
in the above image. It was quite simple to do, which made
my feel a little bit confident when leaving the class. 

I don't understand why I was putting so much pressure on myself during the class. Who cares if my arrangement wasn't perfect? Who cares if it didn't look like everyone else's?

I'm glad I got flustered during my second class because it made me realise that I wasn't there enjoying the new experience but was instead focussing on perfection.

And when perfection becomes my goal, it is easy to highlight the negative things. Picking on what is wrong with the project I am working on and with myself.

When I look at the arrangement I think that it looks like a mess. I am unsettled because of the emotions I felt while making it. But when you see it, it may look pretty decent. Maybe it even looks beautiful.

The reason why it may look appealing to you is because the flowers hold beauty in themselves. In or outside of the arrangement they are beautiful.

No matter how messed up, unconventional, or ugly you may feel; there is an unchanging and constant beauty in you that others can see.

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