As I made this week's set of tags for the #365somethings2018 challenge, I picked up a few insights about creativity and collage that I'd like to share with you today.
(As you know if you've been following along lately, I am making seven mixed media tags every week this year, and my plan is for each set to be inspired by what we're making in the studio that week in Art Fix classes. )
This last week, since we were diving into collage, I decided to start with a blank slate for the backgrounds—slate grey being the color inspiration—and began to build quick collages. As a first pass, my goal was to just get the images down in one sitting and then come back later to add the final layers. Which I did.
If you're just now joining me, I am participating in the 365 Somethings 2018 Project hosted by Tammy Garcia and Hannah Andersson. To meet this challenge over the year, I am making a series of seven tags per week based on the Art Fix class project of the week I teach at the studio. I am sharing the series, with hundreds of other makers and artists, on Instagram #365somethings2018. If you want to be inspired, check out that hashtag—and it's not too late to join in, too!
This Week: Acrylic Glazing
Above you see tags #22-28/365 (top three pics) which feature acrylic glazed boxes inspired by this week's Art Fix project. The two bottom pics show my project piece, where we glazed block compositions on wood artist panels. Next week we will add more layers and media to complete the project.
Combining paint and glazing medium, acrylic glazing is such a wonderful technique
Next week on Monday January 29th we’ll be hosting our first webinar, Creativity Unlocked—and I’d love it if you would join us. I’ve invited my mentor and Creative Coach, Fiona Moore, to come talk to us and lead a group discussion about creativity and how we can each get in touch with our own charged creative selves. To register, RSVP on our meetup site and then join us that night at 7pm on your computer or mobile device from the comfort of your own home.
Here are some of my thoughts on Creativity to get the conversation started…
I know from the outside looking in that my relationship with my own creativity must look pretty solid.
One of my favorite things to do is to sit with my iPad in the mornings with a cup of coffee (or two) and read. There are just so many interesting people with fascinating information and stories to share!
To find these gems, I subscribe to my favorite bloggers by RSS (I use Feedly, an RSS app) and in addition to their content some of these smart and generous souls share links to their favorite internet reads. The bloggers I admire have excellent taste and expose me to all kinds of ideas I wouldn’t otherwise encounter. Some about art, some about stuff in the world.
— The least I can do is share, too.. All of the following links are posts and articles others have shared with me lately and I now share with you. Grab a cup of coffee (or tea) and enjoy!
So yesterday I mentioned that I am joining the 365 Somethings 2018 Project. Hosted by Tammy Garcia and Hannah Andersson, this is a challenge anyone can join and the actual project is completely open ended. As long as we commit to creating 365 different pieces, it doesn't matter how often we create them or what we create. Simply create your 365 pieces over the year and share what you make on Instagram, #365somethings2018.
Like I said, I'm super excited about it because with the way I'm going to do it, I think I can reap the benefits of the challenge—to improve and make more art—without actually creating more work for myself AND without having to create something every day. And it will be so cool to have 365 "somethings" at the end of the year!
These days, many people are adopting a word of the year. I believe the concept began over a decade ago now with Ali Edwards and has grown internet-wide. The idea is to find a word (through year-end reflection) that will serive as a sort of touchstone for the year: a guiding word to come back to as a way to stay focused on some quality that is important to your year. If you're interested in learning more, Susannah Conway has a free workbook to get you thinking.
This year my word is "distill". I want to distill my work to its essence—the essential meaning of what I want my work in this world to be.
It begins with an understanding that I am in fact driven by three obsessions. I am simply drive to:
I've been on an online hiatus for the holidays and I'm now just getting back to "real life". As you might know, our family celebrated in central America this year, and it was a great trip. We spent a few weeks in rainforests of Belize and Guatamala tramping high atop and ancient Mayan ruins, communing with howler monkeys,—and we had some lovely ocean time, too. Best of all, though, my husband and I got to spend good time with our 20-something kids, which is premium time these days. All in all, it was "unBelizeable!"
I hope you had a wonderful holiday season—and I hope you're as excited as I am for all the creative possibilities of the new year.
As you might know, I put out a monthly E-Newsletter on the studio website, We Are All Createful. Normally, I blog over here about all things creative and leave that newsletter for studio news. but this month I just have to share all the news in that e-newsletter with you here too.
1) We are getting a very special opportunity at the end of this month. Please join us!
CREATIVITY UNLOCKED, a Webinar with Creativity Coach, Fiona Moore
Scheduled for Monday, January 29th, 7-8:30pm, this webinar is like an online conference call via computer. We’ll be able to share our screens so it’ll be like being in the studio—only we'll all be at home!
We'll talk about things like where the creative impulse comes from, why you don’t need to worry about being creative or not, and how to unblock feeling stuck—and much more.
I opened Createful Community Art Studio in January, 2016, but it all really began with the art group several years before that.
Many of us in that first art group had little art making experience, but we all had lots of enthusiasm as we began to explore mixed media: acrylic paint, collage, felt, marbling, recycled materials, bookmaking, art journaling, watercolor...we took up projects, taught ourselves, experimented...
We allowed ourselves the pleasure and commitment of a weekly art date and it paid off in how far every single one of us grew into our own creative selves, creating beautiful work sometimes, and understanding and appreciating both our own and others' unique style and voice.
We also created not such great work sometimes too. Because that's the nature of experimenting and learning, right?
Surprise and delight and also "ughs" and "yucks". It's all part of the creative process, maybe the most important lesson of all.
Our art group was—and is still—a beautiful thing.
I began to want to share this experience with others outside of the group, so I opened the studio, and to make a long story short...
As a hopeless creative, you need to immerse yourself in color, image, line, shape—totally free of all heavy, mental machinery. Ahhh. This is your time to drop down into yourself and enter the experience of your own creativity.
Isn’t it funny how we love it so and yet it can be so difficult to actually do? We crave the experience of creating—our heart calls—but before we know it our lives get filled with everything else.
That doesn’t have to happen. No matter how little time or space in your life, you can create in your life too. You can in fact live a creative life.
I was thinking about all this as my life has sped up
Not everyone is called to create in this way. They have other calls.
Don’t worry. When you answer, your heart won't be asking you to make Art (capital "A"; noun).
That call would better come from a recruiter (or maybe a telemarketer posing as a recruiter). The choice to make Art—for sale—is a career choice, I think. A good path for some, and who knows, maybe you will make that choice someday—to be a professional Artist. But the heart isn’t really much interested in careers.
No, this call is your heart asking you to art (lowercase "a"; verb): to create without any other intention except to love doing it and to love what you make.