Choose Wisely

It’s the 1st April and I’m happy to bring you a new post. My new project Holding On’ is now here. I’m about to finish my project for March and it will be uploaded to my portfolio shortly. I’m now in a regular routine of creating short term projects which is keeping me focused and I’m really grateful. I’ve built up a routine where I can create as much as is possible, it’s really providing a sense of achievement. My Patreon page is up and running. I post to my Art Journal every Tuesday, and Why Art? On a Saturday. I’m building up my Patreon page but it will take a bit longer.

I’ve created a lifestyle blog called The Labour Is The Maker where I post daily about daily living. It’s probably not in the true sense of a lifestyle blog where I present a fabulously enviable life of glamour, but I have found it really quite helpful. It moves all my personal thoughts and feelings regarding this life and how to manage it to a specific page. I spend a lot less time on social media as a result. Twitter has me in stitches and I consider my Twitter feed a vital part of my practice, but I would prefer to keep my time on there to a minimum. I love Instagram and I post an image nearly every day, but I want to change the conversation a little bit and not spend too much time there either.

In terms of my art practice this means I’m now posting quite a lot and that takes up time, it’s something I want to do because I think around the work and what’s involved a lot. I keep notes and diaries and I want to write frequently about the process of art making, the value in art making, and reflect on those things.

With world events I haven’t been able to get to the places I need to get to so I’ve had to continue putting things together from home. It’s a frustrating time but also an opportunity to evaluate. I hope you are doing well during quarantine and see you 1st May!

Change Is In The Air

September has arrived and so autumn is on the horizon. As the summer comes to an end I am thinking about what the signs are and how the symbols continue to bring meaning to my life. I’ve travelled, met many different types of people, had ups and downs, and very difficult experiences which led to feelings of distress and confusion.

During the summer I started to create items for my Folksy store and a different creative attitude was required. Applying art to interpret memory, events and experiences in your own life isn’t the same as creating for another person. This is where I began to have fun. Over the summer the search for meaning became the practice of finding and interpreting signs and symbols. Books and art works that have helped me along the way have become sources of inspiration that I can explore further. I’m creating so that the signs and symbols can be interpreted by the individual for the individual. As I began to create for others the element of water, the insect the fly, and the object the feather revealed themselves. Water is cleansing, washing away the dirt. The feather represents hope. The fly symbolises decay. All three create a sense of change, transformation, moving forward. Which symbols will revealed themselves in the coming months is an exciting prospect.

The 23rd September is the Autumnal Equinox and the start of Autumn. The harvest will be collected and so I plan to enjoy local produce during this period. In the months that follow the hours of light will get shorter and the darkness will last longer. The air will become chillier, the trees will lose their leaves as they turn hues of gold and then brown, before falling to the ground. It’s a time for hot chocolate and wrapping up warm, maybe in a scarf you’ve knitted or one you’ve found at a craft fair.

With the longer periods of darkness it’s important to feel safe. Increasing your sense of personal safety in a uncertain world can improve your well being. Try to think of the people you know, the times you’ve had, the places you’ve been and the activities you’ve taken part in where you have felt the most safe. Write them down and visualise them. Even take part in them again. I found this to be very effective.

I will be posting again on the 1st October. I hope that you really enjoy the last bit of summer we have and catch as much sun as is possible before things turn colder. To keep updated please select the follow button.

An open window

lets in a fly,

buzzing all about

trying not to die.

*

I have no swatter.

Its figured it out.

So annoy me in the ear

and I’ll smack myself out.

*

That’s what it thinks.

I know what it thinks,

because he is the enemy

but I’m the one that stinks.

*

That’s what they say,

all those flies,

so they can lay their eggs

in yesterdays meat pie.

*

Printing by hand allows me to connect with the images I create on a personal level whilst exploring all their different applications. I love painting on canvas although my current studio doesn’t allow for much of it, so printing at a smaller scale provides room for experimentation and exploration of meaning. I’ve experimented with print on demand and often the results are fantastic but having studied fashion and textiles I can’t get away from wanting to make items myself. A combination of the two on the different platforms that exist is how I approach this.

Since 2010 I’ve experimented with my art making almost daily, unsure of where it’s taking me. I knew that I had to return to older ideas but invention is always pushing an artist forward- to try new things. I receive ideas everyday and knowing which ones to pursue is half the challenge. Card making is fantastic, like working on hand size canvasses. I can try different effects and there is something lovely about the card. Working on items for my Folksy Store has brought lots of older ideas to the fore to be revisted. I looked at decay and organic during my education. I think that alchemy and a love of nature inspires me to look at the less pleasing side of being alive, the opposites of the pretty and the beautiful, and still I find them so interesting.

This particular block print was tricky to get right and I had to redesign the fly a few times, but purple turned out to be the perfect colour. I must try green and blue. These cards will be on my Folksy store shortly. I will be creating some ‘how to’ posts on printing methods in the next few weeks. Please follow my blog to stay updated.