process (& processing)

I have 2 favourite quotes that I like to share at every workshop that I run because I think that they really help with the creative process.

Theodore Roosevelt said, "Comparison is the thief of joy"
Henri Matisse said, "Creativity takes courage."  
Joy and Courage.
These are definitely 2 of the main ingredients in my work.
Many artists will tell you that the business of creating art is so rewarding, but at the same time it is a lonely process. To combat that, and also to get feedback, I often stop and share it out along the way.

Last week, I took photos at intervals from start to finish while working on a commission, so that I could share the full process with you here.

My process is incredibly fun for me. Sure, I hit roadblocks sometimes, but I know that that is just a natural part of the creative process (insert 'creativity takes courage' mantra here!) There is something incredibly rewarding in solving a design problem because it involves a lot of trust in yourself, a lot of brainstorming and using the 'mind’s eye' to envision solutions.

I don't want to plan everything. I find so much joy in the 'not planning' and in 'just doing'...building it like a puzzle on the spot. I have a general idea and an image in my mind, but the way that it comes together happens very organically (and I love that!)

step one: make a bunch of components out of porcelain

step two: get the adhesive, boards and frames ready

step three: set all the potential components beside the board and start putting them down and moving them into place. I glue them down one by one as I go.

step four: look at the overall balance in terms of shapes and colours. I take photos at this point and look at the overall design on my phone (2 dimensions seems easier to edit from than three!)

My questions to myself at this stage are: Is this visually interesting?  Does this look balanced?  Do I like this? Do I need more of something/less of something?

Then I add and subtract as it feels right.

step five: fill the voids with recycled mirror bits to make it sparkle!

step six: decide on the grout colour. This choice is so very important! My preference is light with light, dark with dark, and medium tones with my favourite oyster grey grout seen here (it dries a lot lighter than when it is first applied).

step seven: mix grout and apply. wipe wipe wipe.

Ta da! It is done.

It is such a rewarding process for me. This Trumpeter Swan piece pictured here was a commission. 2 peices @ 13.5” x 16.5” framed for a bathroom installation. 

I designed the two works to be hung vertically to add interest to a long bathroom wall. 

“Your creative work is not your baby; if anything, you are its baby. Every project has matured me in a different way. I am who I am today, precisely because of what I have made and what it has made me into.”



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