November 18, 2022

Do you believe in serendipity?

 I do.




the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way.

"a fortunate stroke of serendipity"

Similar: fortuitousness . providence . coincidence . chance . happy chance . accident . fluke

Every time I finish a deadline or series I feel a little out of sorts (just ask Tom!), a little lost, unmoored. So I tidy the studio, clean up the detritus of packaging and business cards, tape and bubble wrap.

Yesterday I was reshelving my Art Inventory binder (and yep. REALLY need to get that sorted out!) and underneath, I found a stack of gel prints I'd stashed there for future consideration. I even had post-its tacked to sectioned off prints saying: "drawing ink on top", "tissue paper transfers" and "almost done".  

Welllll... I might disagree (now) on the 'almost done' ones, but what struck me is, HERE is what I need to do next. Figure out how to  make these prints from ...last Spring, a year ago, two??... reflect who I am now.

Because in an equally odd and serendipitous find, I stumbled across a journal of notes (and doodles and diet stuff and ideas for future projects) to discover these words:

Content Crime

  1. Inconsistent  [not commited]
  2. not enough about Art
  3. ignoring mailing list [#1 Asset]
and underneath I'd noted "build trust" and in big letters, FOCUS ON THE ART.

And it's exactly what I needed to read/hear.
In this bash up to the most buyingest time of the year, I forget (every. frickin'. year.) that MY job isn't to try and sell you stuff. MY job is to make art. If you...they... want it? Great! If you/they don't? Well, frankly, not my problem (and yes, I know I am lucky enough not to HAVE to sell my work in order to eat. But I don't. So. I'm sorry?). 

Focus on the art.

November 11, 2022

When starting over is the only option

Last week on Instagram I mentioned in my stories how one of the pieces I'm working on for an upcoming show was kicking my ass. I've just put the final touches on it and thought it would be a good reminder to me, and, hopefully inspirational to you, on how sometimes Starting Over is the only true option. And that's okay!

These works are all on 6 x 6" cradled board. Six are bird themed. I often cover the panels with a mixture of old and new book pages (shiny and not so shiny) so it adds layers before I even start. I'd used a bird as a mask for the gel plate and I kinda liked how it looked with some grungy areas as well as stencils and patterns I'd used for that print.

I wasn't a big fan of the larger words so I used gesso to tone that down. Then I thought it'd be cool to have the bird singing a song with some sheet music I had. There were a couple of iterations but I ended up adding some white pouring medium as well as some stars and it sat there for a week or so.  It was NOT coming together the way I wanted. Further it wasn't telling me (or I couldn't hear) what it needed/wanted next. Which is when I posted about it kicking my ass.

I sanded back the song bubble and then realized, "Yep! The whole thing needed to go." Broke out the palm sander and took it back to the page layers. It felt better already!

I had another gel print of this same bird and cut it out to fit between the stars. Only when it came to adhering it onto the board, I turned it the wrong way gluing it down in the wrong spot. Doh!  As so often happens, serendipitously, I liked it better! Oh! The stars needed reorienting and the background needed finetuning but it was finally coming together, clear messages were being heard.

As an aside... does that sound too WooWoo to you? That the works "speak" to me? Obviously they don't ACTUALLY verbalize their wants and desires. Just my gut ...intuition...Muse...the Universe...experience, however/whatever you want to name it... tells/shows/intuits what my next move should be. Don't knock it until you've tried it. Seriously!
Adjustments were made. Marks were added. And THIS is the final product:

I love it when an artwork comes together!

And if you're still with me (thank you!) I've been thinking of doing another 10 Questions for Artists series in the New Year. If there are questions you'd like to ask me (or other artists), if there is someone you'd love for me to invite to be part of it or if YOU'd like to be part of the series, drop me a comment below or email me. Thanks!!
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