Thursday, June 14, 2012

Adding Layers

A quiet, sunny Thursday morning here; my favorite time of day. I seem to find the most spark when the sun begins to lift or when the moon hangs high. I think that's pretty common.

I started this piece with the intention of keeping it quiet and low-key. You know, just simple and to the point. And then I got going and kept staring right through it as if it were glass...Shuffled a few scraps of paper and stared through it some more. It felt sheepish and meek. And while I'm usually a pusher of "less is more", I usually need the things that I make to really pack a punch. 

And so, after a few trips to the basement for inks, blocks and tools, I started to print. I kept telling myself to keep it calm and restful...but I still think this thing is going to find a fork in the road and choose to veer. The same thing happened with the last 2 pieces...I guess part of the reason is that the challenge of balancing and composing while adding and adding and adding some more is a fun challenge for me. And I think the other reason I always layer more and more is because when it's still or quiet, all the imperfections prod at me even at a half glance. I don't just always seems a bit amateur or something. Not to say I'm a professional or anything. But you know what I mean, right? Maybe? Anyway. Here is where it sits right now...

Yellow arrows, inked to surface. The paper scraps aren't glued down yet. I spend a lot of time staring at the thing before I ever glue. Haha, and to think I wanted to finish this the same day I started...Yeeeahhh. Right.

I read this really great article by Douglas Eby the other day and it made me feel much better about this slow, chameleon-like process. Sometimes I need to step back and remember why I do this in the first place. So far it's the only thing I've found that sustains flow for as long as it does. My other 2 things are solo canoeing and gardening, although gardening isn't as good at it. Well, writing is good too, even though I'm always finding myself in fits with who I am vs. who I'm not. I think that started when I began writing for Houzz. Anyway...back to this article I read. It basically talks about how affected artists/designers/creative minds can be by their environment, which is something I mentioned in my last post. It was reassuring to read it from somebody else. One of my favorite parts from the post is: 

"1. Acceptance. Accepting things as they are is a great way to give yourself permission to be exactly where you’re at in your creative process even if that means struggling to maintain motivation or coming up with ideas. In other words, not judging your current situation as good or bad, but that it is what it is."

Something I need to remember more in my personal life: that things are what they are. Thankfully I'm pretty good at this when it comes to dealing with others. But during my own personal feats I always tend to be pretty hard on myself which is never fun. Annnyyywaaay. That's where I am with the art things right now. 

So my question for you is: What have you learned about yourself in your creative processes? I'm always curious about this sort of thing...I'd love to hear what you think. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

what you shared reminds me of the way a poet wakes in the morning, changes a comma in a draft...fusses over the comma all day and at the end of the day, returns the comma to its original position. *sigh*....what i have been learning by writing poetry and creative nonfiction essays- is that i am not the driver. i am maybe the conduit (?)....i have to keep letting go, to make myself available for whatever it is that is trying to reach me. recently i started collage- which has surprised everyone because i have never done anything with my hands except play viola in another life time. and in collaging- i am learning to let go faster, and to trust that not every dot needs to be connected. this in turn informs my poetry, and ultimately some of my personal life (when i have one, that is . . . ha!)

lovely to read your words and see your art.