sifting through years of collage material, things i have folded up and held on to for years. when i open the large shallow box that contains them i feel simultaneously soothed and disturbed by my nostalgia. i keep a list of every address i’ve ever lived at. pastel commuter rail tickets to fitchburg. hurtful notes from ex-lovers. beautiful paper i’ve assigned meaning to. they fill a box i could never part with.
but using them is something different. it’s not keeping them or letting them go. it’s putting them in a place more visible to you, or less visible to me. eight years ago i worked on a similar project with a best friend, a mobile strung with nostalgia. beads, scraps and charms from jewelry boxes collected together and bound with thread. hanging them up helped put them away, or put them to use.
art book club’s collaborative art works are some of my favorite. this time we decided to make a book of it, but instead of chronological pages, we chose to create on every page anywhere we please. i just received the book for the first time and i’m looking forward to adding my part. a favorite page of mine:
none of these feel complete, but here is recent progress…
This project is still very nebulous for me but I’ve been working a lot on self portraits I’m still a bit too scared to share. Looking at myself from unflattering angles, both physically and otherwise, how I’ve changed, how I stick up for myself and take up space, stand my ground. It feels self indulgent to pore over ever inch of my own body but I don’t know if I’m qualified to try and map someone else’s until I’ve mastered my own. Maybe the first step in the process is getting brave enough to share, to say this is how I am, this is how I see myself. I’m working on it.
I’ve been dealing a lot with the use of space -which happens to be one of the themes. I spent a long time adding to the drawing from my last post only to find that I didn’t like the composition and I’ve started over entirely. I don’t mind, though. I learned a couple of valuable lessons.
1) I don’t think about space before placing pencil to paper, which might work for some, but not for me.
2) I still have a hard time filling a relatively small space. I seem to scale down when I draw instead of thinking big.
I do this all the time; spend a lot of time on something only to start over. In my professional career, I plan like crazy so this doesn’t happen. In my artistic career, I dive right in with a vague plan. Interesting.
Here’s to lessons learned and starting over!
Been feeling a little frustrated creatively the past couple weeks, uninspired, unmotivated, in a mood. Something I struggle with in art and life is not to push so hard. Sometimes it’s important to let go of the expectations and pressures we place on ourselves and just let things be what they are, just be present. Sometimes it’s important to get out of the studio, get out of the bubble and have experiences, get inspired. I love playing with watercolor at the beach because the hot sun dries everything so fast. Sometimes the process is more important than the product.
the beginning. planting seeds. patience.
not sure why it takes so much for me to fill a 12″ x 18″ piece of paper with flowers. each one so carefully placed, perhaps erased, only to start again.
bougainvillea grows through fences. sea gusts part the clouds. valencia oranges in boxes piled on the sidewalks, hands peeling the skin to show you the fruit. “very sweet, very sweet.”