Another busy week in the home studio…
I have been following the TEA Sketchbook Circle exhibition and workshops closely onFacebook and Twitter; it looks like everyone had a ball and some really inspiring work was produced. Having looked at comments on the Facebook forum on the run up to the event, I think Google Maps was a bit misleading in its instructions; I’m not sure the journey would have been as convoluted and arduous as it led me to believe. Still, there’s always next year, and there will no doubt be further events to attend.
I am ready to send my February sketchbook, and receive my own book back with Louise’s first additions; I’ve seen a sneak peek on Twitter and am eagerly anticipating it’s arrival soon!
I have had a productive week in my little corner studio; I am busy with my Documented Life Project folder and am enjoying getting back to basics and doing some more illustrative work. I love to draw at the end of the day – at any time of day actually, but sadly my working hours and duties sometimes interfere with my urge to record the world around me. I’m fortunate enough to work part time, and in an environment where creativity is valued and encouraged, but in a busy Early Years setting it’s not always possible or appropriate to spend time drawing. The focus is always the children and their learning journey, and following their interests in as creative a way as possible. My drawings and art work are my oasis in the vast sea of work, dogs and the responsibility of single parenthood – and this simple outlet of self-expression helps me manage the stresses of daily life and maintain a positive outlook. As I sit and draw, I feel the day’s tensions fade away, and my brain empties and slows down.
This week I have also been cutting down old pieces of work and turning them into something new; either backgrounds for the pages in my DLP folder, or the start of an entirely new piece of work. I am currently exploring the properties and possibilities of the humble tissue paper; I love using basic supplies and turning them into something beautiful. I love the transparency of tissue paper when it is glued, and the way it bleeds onto absorbent paper when wetted down, and I have been exploring all of these possibilities this week. I have used pieces of old paintings and pasted vibrant layers onto them to create abstract collages. I love to work in this way, with no predefined idea of what I am trying to achieve, moving pieces around until I find a composition I like, and then gluing it down. Although I enjoy producing more illustrative work too, it’s sometimes easy to get bogged down in detail and tied up in the message you are trying to convey; my collage work is the antidote – simple, uncomplicated, wordless, and, probably for those reasons, strangely effective.
This week the Guardian featured a glimpse into the sketchbooks of Grayson Perry; the pages were colourful and joyous and completely inspirational. I am motivated anew to keep working in my sketchbooks and notebooks, to keep trying new things, to keep encouraging and sharing my passion for drawing and making with my daughter, and to make art together, to keep being an advocate for the arts and creativity in education, to keep joining in and to keep sharing my journey.