Anthony J. Martinez

Picking it back up

A prolonged absence from playing any violin at all certainly did not do any favors for my technique. Fortunately, I can still hear the horrors and remember what I am supposed to do to prevent them so it is just a matter of time and practice before they are banished again. This time around, I am trying to be more disciplined in my practice and establish a real routine. It is easy to overlook the importance of consistency, but also easy to see how much of a positive impact comes with focused time towards any task.

Back to the strings

For the majority of my life there has always been a stringed instrument close at hand. Most of the time it has been a guitar, but about two years ago I decided to add the violin to the mix. The pandemic put a lot of working musicians in financial hardship as live venues became a distant memory, and so I did what I could to throw in some support: took lessons online!

The journey has been interesting to say the least. Where I thought there might be plenty of similarities, I found almost none. With the exception of my ear, and general musicality, there is almost nothing at all that translates from playing guitar to playing violin. At some point, I found myself frustrated that improving my violin foundation seemed to cost me some of my guitar skills.

Work got exceedingly busy, and my stress levels increased to the point where taking lessons was no longer enjoyable at all. I stopped and took a long break. Here we are several months, and a few injuries later, and I would like to start again. Yesterday, I tuned both a guitar and a violin. Playing both for a few minutes was a nice change of pace, so I'm going to get back into a practice routine and start my lessons again.

A little summer spinning

The craft section of this site was looking a little bare, and so were most of the bobbins on my Pollywog spinning wheel.

Spinning a BFL single on my Pollywog

Even though it is annoyingly hot here in Delft, it feels nice to sit behind the spinning wheel and make an hour or two disappear without any screen time. Maybe this weekend I will also spin on the antique wheel I picked up at a second-hand store here in The Netherlands for less than $30.