Tuesday, December 3, 2013
N: smiling in the sunlight. Best quote this week: after jumping towards me on the couch, wearing a cape and crown, rubbing her knee which she bumped- then howled about, between sniffles "But did you see me fly through the air like a rainbow?"
A: itching to get her hands on those tiny, squishy, dinosaurs.
This week: small animal sprig molds (flat backed thin molds for applique onto other pieces), pouring plaster with a new friend, freeing the tiny elephant from his background. Working with kids- nothing is sacred- toys are everywhere, paper is for drawing on- giant heads- simple bodies, large eyes, a smile, always a smile. Tiny hands reach out to 'help' and how can I refuse?
I tried to get N to make a mug with me today- letting her stamp away at the clay, and then rolling it up into a cylinder- I was disappointed because what has so far been really complex, lovely patterning, turned sort of simple- instead of filling in the whole field, she did some small stuff in the center only before proclaiming it 'done'. I worry that she's losing the abandon that she used to create with- and I fear with it her awesome sense of texture, and pattern. I applauded her ability to colour within the lines but with that fine motor skill comes a self editing that I don't want her to do yet- I worry that she's learning to make things too 'precious', to limit herself, and I don't want that. *sigh* oh the worries of the artist mother...so privileged...
Sunday, November 24, 2013
Monday, November 18, 2013
Designs for the tiles for the kitchen- plus some extra designs just for fun. I'm having a bit of a hard time deciding what the final tile will be- I think I'll end up making a few designs and molds and deciding after they get the glaze on. It's a tough thing to mentally translate these designs into the finished product- because the dark lines will, of course, end up just as raised relief, so it's won't look as busy. The sketches are a pretty basic diagram of the finished product, which will be all one colour (probably white- or some pale variation thereof), with the design carved in bas relief.
The larger tracing paper allows me to see the whole pattern together- to make sure that things line up etc. It's also useful for transferring the images- (and for making me reel back in horror when I see how 'seventies' the pattern appears in black and white- not to worry- it's much more classic looking when carved).
posting along with Jane.
Sunday, November 17, 2013
N: dressed up as 'Gypsy Mama', looking out into the snow. " I didn't even know it was Christmas!" she says when she sees the snow this morning.
A: Teething big time this week- fussy, feverish, sleepy, spending all her time on my lap or in my arms. Though we just started using the catnip tincture I made, and it does actually seem to help a bit.
Monday, November 11, 2013
Well- here it is where the magic happens, I was reading Jane's blog- and she's come up with the idea of showing your workspace and your sketchbook- bi-weekly- I'm not sure that I'm up for that level of posting (or you may see a lot of photos that look awfully similar, as no work progresses), but I do love the idea of sharing our workspaces, and I've been wanting to write more about art in this space, so I'll play along a little bit. Also this week has been uncharacteristically productive so I actually have stuff to share.
I think that an Artists' workspace is a bit sacred really- I sort of hate sharing works in progress- I cringe when people want to see what I'm working on- because I feel like it's not enough, not clean enough, finished enough, well thought out enough, and I worry that the take away will be of me as a messy, flaky, kind of bad artist, not serious enough, or neat enough or worse- they'll think I'm a wannabe artist. I should know better- I don't know where that idea came from- except that I am a super responsible person- and I know the flaky artist stereotype- and I don't want to fit into it at all. Except that...well...I'm messy, and making art for me does require a little (or a lot) creative mess, I need to get into it and not worry about putting stuff away in the middle- I tend to make a giant mess, especially now that I have the little ones to help me with the mess making, then I clean it up and start fresh on the new project.
Just lately I've been working on some tile patterns, so I've been doing the drawing and figuring, and brainstorming everywhere in the house- where ever the kids will be still, and I can avoid their 'help' for a few moments. This mostly means mealtimes, I sit and eat and draw, and it's actually been great- I've gotten more done that way than I have in months. I also tidied the table in my studio (not the spinning wheel though- which has been put there to keep it out of the kid's every day reach- but it got festooned with vintage hang tags, and fabric scraps while I was making the Halloween costumes, I asked N if I could tidy it- and she gasped and said "no! it's ready for Christmas!"). I enjoyed the clean table for a day or so and then I promptly covered it up again with prints from a printmaking workshop I attended (which was fantastic- my first time making prints- I think I may be hooked...).
The thing about the workspace as sacred space stream of thought, is that it's not really a productive thought- it ends up being something similar to the 'fear of the blank page', it ends up alienating artists, and allowing us to believe that other artists are better than we are- at everything, real artists have bright, open, airy, clean, absolutley tidy workspaces. When the reality is that most artists work in corners of their homes- with extra dressers, and kids toys, and random shoes (the one in the photo of my studio shelves above, that has me wondering that classic question: is that the lost shoe? or the one I found already?). I am lucky enough to have a studio space all my own (you can see it in it's bright newly painted form in this post), I like it clean, sort of empty, and full of space- but it's rarely like that- especially if I'm working on something, and I don't think that's a bad thing actually.
I'm linking up with Jane at the Flight Platform, on this and other sketchbook posts.