Sunday, March 08, 2009

I've been really struggling to fit everything in my days this last week. The Rosie was sick and required much holding and worrying over. Teen has been sick too, a lingering cold, and I've alternated between bringing him hot cups of tea and yelling at him to still manage a few minutes of chores. The weather has been cold, snowy, rainy, wet, slushy, cold, icy... most of this all at the same time. It makes me feel housebound, when I haven't been out in the mess shoveling or slushing around on errands. The day fills up and what gets tossed is, of course, art time.

The studio needs a freestanding heater to be warm enough to work in there and even when I remember to turn it on earlier so I can get in there later, the electrical breaker for that side of the house has suddenly decided that's one thing too many plugged in. ARgh. But even if I can get the studio warmed up, it is now so full of boxes and STUFF that it's almost impossible to set anything up to work. Very. Big. Sigh.

I think today I'll set up a card table in the living room and try to gather up the things I need for step two (or step three or five or .... I don't know, depends on what you count as a step - do I count going to the store for supplies as a step? cleaning off the table as a step?) of my ATC project - which I was gonna tell you about but then didn't - and see if I can work on them in front of the television tonight. Although, bad night to choose, Sunday is a television wasteland.

I'm telling you this because I think that if I do, it will inspire me to follow through. Hahaha! Maybe I will. Maybe I'll get in the studio digging for supplies and just end up cleaning instead. Or working on something else. Or maybe the Teen or Phone or Some Other Distraction will drag me sideways.

Someone sent me a link to this photo artist today. Isn't he (I think it's a he, I have no idea) fabulous!? I love these images. It reminds me of this lovely blogger who I've been remiss in visiting for a few months. She uses all natural supplies while the former's appeal is the juxtaposition of natural and unnatural, but the similarities are that both use the natural world as a backdrop and both create something unexpected in that setting.

I used to create images like this when I was a child. I didn't take photographs of them. I just did it for my own pleasure. They lasted only as long as I saw them, or perhaps they lingered until a foot kicked them or the wind toppled them. I'm not sure what compelled me to make them. I think I saw natural patterns and designs all around me and decided nature was as good a palette to work with as crayons or paint, and I tried my own hand at making them.

Nowadays I tend to think of creating art as something that happens in the studio and finding art is something that happens through the lens of my camera. I forget that the two concepts can be combined. A few times in the last few years I've spontaneously played with creating in the world around me and those unplanned moments stand out as blissful living-in-the-moment memories. Why don't I remember to do this more often? If this sort of play brings me so much joy, why don't I do it on a regular basis!?

Fortunately, as an adult, I've had the advantage of having a camera to capture a few of these creations. Nothing too grandiose, just simple ideas. But still, they change the everyday into a surprise.


The Rock Tree

This one was actually William's idea. I forced him to spend an entire afternoon playing in the mountains with me. He was most unhappy about being dragged out on a planned "bonding with nature" event, but he really got into the spirit of things once we got out there.


I went for a walk at a botanical gardens in Reno one autumn day and ended up playing for the better part of an hour with these crabapples that had fallen in the parking lot.

Peering Down at Me

Bottle Face

When they put in new sidewalks in front of our house a few summers ago, they disturbed a lot of fill dirt that had been brought in from other places to make the road. One of the workers found an unbroken dairy bottle and that inspired me to spend one late afternoon digging for my own treasures.

With the economy these days, and the cost of art supplies, this also appeals to me as a way of making low impact, environmentally friendly art.

I'm challenging myself to make some unexpected, ephemeral art today. How bout you - wanna play?


Create something, post a photo of it, and let me know.



Shell said...

I do hope you take your card table out and work on your ATC project. If there is nothing on, you can always check out
Your pictures are bright and have a whimsical feel to them. I especially like the Rock Tree. I have a fondness for trees.

KayEllen said...

I love your photos and put a smile on my face every time I see them ;-)

Hugs and thanks for your inspiration...

I am feeling the same way the juggling act of jobs in my life!


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