Thursday, January 20, 2011

Winter is loooooong

Scraps of gourds put to good use.
This weather in Kentucky is grating on me. It reminds me of some winters back in New York in the 70's. Long and snowy. Only, back then, I was in high school and enjoyed snow days. Now, not so much. Thankfully my studio is heated, albeit by kerosene heater, but heated nonetheless. I can't imagine how stressed and how far behind I would be if I were still working out of my kitchen. Not to mention the fact that since I have this completed space, I've attempted, and succeeded at "going to work" as opposed to doing errands and finding thousands of things to keep me from doing actual work. I'm not at the pace I'd like to be but it's a beginning and it feels good so far. What's the cliché? Rome wasn't built in a day. My goal from the beginning of this year, is to be committed and serious about my work and put aside the worry and procrastination of thinking that making art without financial profit right off the bat is a waste of my time. After all, I have a wonderful supportive husband who is 100% behind me and have an opportunity now to begin this career so now is the time.

Available soon for Valentines Day!

Long before I began work in clay, I drew, like most beginning artists. I don't draw seriously anymore, unless I'm sketching ideas for new pieces, but I do still doodle and mark things up. I think a lot of that influence comes from the old graffiti days back in NYC and in particular, working in NYC when Keith Haring was doing his thing, even before he became known, when you'd ride the subway and see the street art. The best street art, to me, is things with some spontaneity, humor and whimsy because often, on the street, on your commute, you only have a brief moment to take all the information in. [Here's a cool website of great street art from around the world. Awesome ideas!] You can't contemplate it like a painting in a museum, nor should you, in context, I think. Anyway, that kind of sketching/mark making/iconography cleaved well with the graphic design field I was in at the time. It all influenced me and I still need to do it. Right now, I'm satisfying that urge with gourd badges I'm making for an upcoming Etsy Store launch, this week (hopefully). I'm adapting that doodling onto gourd shell from gourds I've grown on the farm. In a later posting, I'll get into the Cult of The Gourd and my affinity for them but for now, I'm busy burning little doodles onto circles and squares of shell, painting and dying them and then attaching a pin on the back. Wearable doodles. Some sketches have proven to be typical of me and reference... well, the naughty bits.

Rest assured, I am still working in clay and have begun one form already. I'm also in the middle of getting bowls ready for an Empty Bowls charity event here in Richmond, KY coming up in March. The problem with working in clay that I have in the winter is the studio takes a little bit of time to warm up from the overnight cold of 50 degrees or less so there's not a whole lot of incentive to sink my hands into cold clay and water.

The other project that I'm wrapping up is four gourd art pieces. These are a bit of an extension from my previous gourd work. I don't gravitate to what passes for typical gourd art work, you know, painting a Santa Claus or snowman onto a gourd. That seems so... pedestrian. I'll get more in depth later on that one.

Just trying to keep busy...

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