It’s a blog-walk!

Francesca Watson Designs - Handmade Artisan JewelryYay! It’s time for the 4th Color Palette Blog Walk, hosted by Brandi Hussy over at Brandi Girl Blog. The theme this time is “achievements” – anything we’re proud of, big or small. We’re supposed to post photos we took, and color palettes that go with them, which represent an achievement. My submission is two-fold.

I took this photo on a girl’s weekend in the Texas Hill Country. It was a painful weekend – first because I found myself completely unable to stop talking about the frustration and anger I felt over my then-current work situation, and second because I came down with one of the worst migraines I’d had in a long time. The weekend was supposed to be about girlfriends getting together to talk and laugh and shop and eat and stay up late – and I really just missed the boat. I wallowed in the misery of my circumstances, and I’m sure it wasn’t pleasant for the other ladies either. It was a wake-up call, and the turning point in my thinking process about what my next steps should be. This was the weekend when I realized that leaving my job was really my only option – for my own health, I needed to get out and get back to basics.

I had just recently gotten my new 50mm lens and was playing around with it – this palette is a detail taken from a photo of a glass lamp that reflected the view from the deck in very interesting ways. It’s a reminder of that weekend, and of the moment of clarity that followed. I love the curves and distorted reflection of the sky and trees outside the window.

I quit my job on May 11, and the following week, I took a class in fold forming metal – something I had long been interested in but had never really pursued. My mission, while I am in not-working mode, is to try and re-establish some important disciplines in my life – prayer, time in the Word, eating healthy food, and getting healthy – and to pursue creative expression as a means of recovering a little of the self I lost in the last two and half years. This bracelet is the first piece I made after that class, and it felt triumphant – it felt like stepping from a shadowed place into the light, where everything was suddenly clearer. When I tried this bracelet on, I remember thinking, “Hey. I really can do this.” It felt powerful and right and humbling all at the same time. It felt like a beginning.

So, my achievement is that I stepped out and did the thing that I needed to do for me – not for anyone else, and not because anyone thought I should. It was a huge thing for me to simply say, “I need this.” And it was without regard for what was practical or responsible or grown-up. It is turning out to be just what  I needed – some space, some creative time, some new ways of looking at the materials I use. It’s been a big deal.

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Please visit the other bloggers participating in the blog walk!

Rebecca at Electric Atom by Atomic Cowlick –
Ronica at Bad Jones Rising –
Rose at Heroine Jewelry –
Cynthia at Ornamental Style –
Jennie at Snapdragon Diaries –
Gloria at Colour your day happy –
Dave at Fresh Rag –
Lauren at Fizgiggery –
Francesca at Francesca Watson –  <— YOU ARE HERE
Miriam at Der Hund der Philosophin –
Libby at Current Observations –
Lakshmi at Studio Lakshmi –
Brittany at The Home Ground –
Brandi at Brandi Girl Blog –


17 replies
  1. lakshmi
    lakshmi says:

    COngratulations on doing it for yourself. The best kind of achievement ! I love your photography as well as both color palettes . Subtle yet elegant.

  2. Brandi
    Brandi says:

    What amazing palettes, Francesca, both in photography and in the story.

    I’m grateful you shared them with us – I’m sure the Hill Country photo in particular wasn’t the easiest to share. But look at how far you’ve come! Being able to recognize what your body and spirit were telling you about what wasn’t working in your life, that’s no simple thing, really. I’m glad for your sake that you were able to recognize a bad situation and move away from it.

    And wow, that bracelet is stunning! What a testament to your skill! I would look at it and smile – clearly, you’re on the path you need to be on, and frankly, that IS kind of practical and grown-up to me.

    • Francesca
      Francesca says:

      Thanks, Brandi – you’re right, the Hill Country photo was hard. But it was also necessary. I’m walking through a season right now that’s all about coming out of hiding – something God has been working in me for quite a while. My word for this year is “fearless” and posting this photo and this story seemed to fit with that.

      Glad you like the bracelet – I just love it. It was one of those experiences where I liked it so much I just couldn’t believe I’d made it! I’ve worn it practically every day since. 🙂

  3. Libby
    Libby says:

    Wow – the photos are beautiful, the palettes are so lovely (I may use one of them) and your bracelet is just spectacular. Your post actually gave me goose bumps because you did it! You removed yourself from a situation and that is, indeed, a huge achievement. Thanks for sharing.

    • Francesca
      Francesca says:

      Thanks so much for the encouragement, Libby – and please, if you use one of the palettes, let me know so I can see what you did with it!! I’d love to check it out!

  4. Rose
    Rose says:

    Congrats on freeing yourself from your job, that takes courage in many ways! I think we are so lucky to live at a time where we can really find something that makes our hearts sing – for me, also jewelry – and be able to supplement or sustain ourselves with it. And I love the detail and warm colors of your bracelet 🙂

    • Francesca
      Francesca says:

      Thank you, Rose! Yes, I’m feeling very fortunate to be able to take this time to pursue something I love, and I’m hopeful that it will turn out to be enough so that I don’t have to go back to a traditional job. So glad you like the bracelet!

  5. Cynthia@OrnamentalStyle
    Cynthia@OrnamentalStyle says:

    It truly is an achievement to know when something isn’t working and to do something about it. It’s neat how the first photo represents when you knew you had to make a change and the second photo the results of that change. The photos are great, the palettes are fantastic, and the bracelet is too cool.

    • Francesca
      Francesca says:

      Thank you, Cynthia! I’m so glad you like the photos and palettes – and I love the bracelet too. I’ve been wearing it pretty much non-stop – I don’t think I’ve ever made anything that interesting before. 🙂

  6. Dave
    Dave says:

    If not for ourselves, then who else? Art should always be personal first and foremost, otherwise it’s decoration. I dig the abstraction of the first palette and subtle color mixes of both.

    • Francesca
      Francesca says:

      Thanks for that, Dave – you’re right of course, but I struggle with feeling like it’s selfish to pursue it or to acknowledge that it is, in some measure, about me. I appreciate the reminder. 🙂

  7. Roni J.
    Roni J. says:

    I love this post too! Oh, I can’t pick a favorite one..

    I can personally relate to feeling so victorious after making such big leaps in life. Change is so necessary sometimes don’t you think? I wish you all the best in your new steps and wish you happiness and good health! We can use your little palettes are little good luck charms, eh?


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