Wednesday, June 17, 2009

a few newer drawings & photographs

So, I realize that I am a terrible photographer. There is definitely a learning curve when it comes to photographing artwork, and I am at the bottom of it :P. But these are a little better than the first round... I still need to head over to the gallery and spend a morning re-taking photographs of all of the collages. I first went last week in the afternoon (100 degrees!) and the encaustic finish began to melt (took them outside for the daylight). Ah! Instead re-took drawings and metals, and left the collages for a cooler morning trip. This is taking forever, as I am also trying to catch up on other projects as well... *Note to self* documenting/marketing artwork takes just as much time as making it, it seems.

Here are a few newer drawings (finished about two weeks ago)-They are a continuation of the topography series of drawings I am currently showing.

I am happier, however with some of the new photographs I took of slightly older work, especially the metal pieces. Those first photographs on my myartspace site are terrible, and it is in my best interest to drink some espresso and spend a night replacing and reorganizing all of them! Someday, I will hire someone to do all this. Someday. :)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

small transitions

Well, I would have liked to think, by reading my last post, that I would have documented several of those great Austin places/spaces as well as shared some other work and thoughts by now. But no, it was official- I realized it just yesterday... I have been in one of those creative funks. The kind that has you running around, expending energy and frustration, but accomplishing nothing. I think it came on with the completion of my show deadline- when I took a step back to re-access my work and work through new ideas *bam!*- Funk. All ideas feel fruitless, pointless and overwhelming to accomplish. It all seems to be a cyclical process of meeting one deadline and locating another.

I have noticed several stages in getting out of this mental/emotional space. Stage one is list-making... begin to list all of the things that I would like to do, and all of the things I need to catch-up on (tend to ignore house-projects, etc... when I am focused on an art deadline). This process goes through several incarnations. Then, head out to the studio and begin to play with new materials and create some new experiments, while continuing an older idea as well. Then say, "forget it!" and focus on reading a book and some extra exercise for a couple of days. Try to refresh without feeling anxious and guilty for not being in the studio. Then, just as quickly as it came on, it lifted this morning... new energy, new ideas.

Finally, really working in earnest on the #MailArt project through twitter... have been experimenting with batches of handmade paper for this project... photos to arrive soon.- hopefully a large batch of postcards will be completely finished by the end of this week.

In the meantime, I also have a large wrought iron gate to weld back together, a silk window cover I have been saying I will finish since last summer, and I promised my boyfriend I would paint his guitar for his birthday. That was, well, two years ago, I think. (to my credit, I was back in school and did get him a different birthday gift as well :))

So I will be busy moving forward. And will be drinking copious amounts of coffee, I believe. And while I ponder my own frustrations, excitements and ideas, there are riots happening in Iran. I am feeling like my own little funk needs to give it up- there are much bigger issues in the world.

Monday, June 1, 2009

secret spaces...

Spent all morning on the most lovely hike yesterday! I hike regularly, but this one was particularly nice because with the show opening over and new projects not yet begun, I was in the perfect space to just be present in the hike and enjoy. Moments like this come rarely lately- there is always something to either rush off to or my mind is obsessing about needing to get back into the studio. Central Texas is so beautiful this time of year- hot enough to swim, but not yet hot enough to make you feel like you are being boiled inside your skin.

In the spirit of being leisurely, we decided to wander onto some new trails and see where they led. We followed a tiny mountain bike trail down the hill towards the creek. Around the bend of an s-curve, my son suddenly exclaims "hey- there are Christmas tree ornaments in that tree!" He was right- ornaments hung nonchalantly from tree branches with a gold garland winding up the trunk. Nearby, we discovered the sweetest little fort that someone had built in the middle of the greenbelt. The creativity and fun involved was apparent, and while the maker(s) of this space had to at least be old enough to be allowed in the woods alone, it was hard to say whether an adult or older children or both had created this. I love finding these little expressions of anonymous humanity that blend into their surroundings while creatively asserting themselves at the same time. It was such a fun discovery!- we poked around for a bit, looking at the ornaments, finding all the details- like a mock campfire with an action figure placed in front of it and a pine-needle broom, and taking pictures of the dogs inside the fort. While it was just a small portion of our hike, the image of it lingered in my head for hours after.

Most of the time I hike, I am looking down at the ground for little objects and things to place into my collages... I forget about all the times I have stumbled on spaces like this- a set of stones stacked artistically together, a circle of branches, a chair or sometimes a group of plants or flowers intentionally placed or planted. Or even in the middle of a city to find a random sticker with a lovely image stuck to a pole, or a little note.These moments and spaces are so inspiring in their unobtrusiveness and their mystery. There was no need for recognition in their creation, just the simple act of sharing. I love this type of artistic expression because it is about contribution and taking one momentarily out of the mechanical mental place we tend to reside in. It makes me question my own art and ask "what am I doing to contribute and what is the result I am looking for in my own art?" I get inspired to randomly give of my own creativity so that someone else may enjoy for a bit without the trappings of a gallery or designated artspace. Brings back to mind the roots of creativity- to just create for the pure expression/pleasure of doing so.

This brought the idea of a little side project- to look for and document such spaces around Austin and compile them every now and then, posting them to into this blog when I find them. Nothing fancy- just most likely with my camera phone and a desire for creative discovery. I am hoping that out of this I will create my own little anonymous art project and join in the creative expansion!