I remember when I lived in a tiny studio apt and I made all my art sitting on my bed/couch because I didn’t have a table or even enough room on the floor. All my supplies were in bags and shoe boxes. I am glad for real tables now. But it was still a fun time of art making. When I was finally able to afford a one bedroom apt, I kept the same bed/couch in order to sleep in the living room and made the bedroom my art studio. This allowed me to work much larger.
I was reminded of these small work spaces where I made it work, despite it all, when I read today’s episode of The Pulse. Artist Kelly Kilmer, talked about working on the floor and shared a pictures of baggies filled with supplies. It almost makes me nostalgic for the past.
Usually, I am envious of the art studios I see when people share pictures of their spaces. Wood floors, super organized shelves and drawers, clean walls with good lighting. But when I think of the spaces I used to have and the space I have now I need to consider myself fortunate.
If you would like to see the studios of some great artists then check out the Pulse!
Seth calls it Getting In the Groove, another entry in the month long artist survey. Today, artists share the ways that they get mentally prepared to create their art. I shared with Seth that,
“I work best with deadlines and challenges. In many ways I am a very linear, organized, list-making type of artist. But usually if I just go up to my studio and sit down at my sewing center or collage desk I can start creating pretty quickly, getting TO the studio takes some inspiration. I will search the net, look at art books and doodle ideas in order to get myself into the head space for studio time.”
It seems like there are many artists that struggle with getting to that creative space. Because I teach Middle School Art (yikes, school starts in 4 days!) I see so many of my kids struggle to get started. Of course, many of them are completely new to the artistic process and even to handling the media provided. On top of that, they struggle with the whole belonging issue that is so heightened in the early teen years. Part of me always wants to PUSH them, “come on, we only have 30 minutes until the bell rings!” But I know few artists can be forced to create on demand. So I encourage them to use many of the strategies that these PULSE artists employ. Listening to music (like Kim Logan), watching films about the work and lives of other artists (like James Michael Starr), or just sitting down to the supply center and finding some color or pattern that draws them into the creation. I tell them to think about and use their dreams (like Angela Cartwright and Roben-Marie Smith) or to look at the many art related books that I have in the classroom (like Dawn Sokol) All these things also help me. But of all the ideas presented in the survey, I think my favorite answer was from Linda Woods, who said, “I just open my eyes!” If only that worked for me.
Jennifer is my new favorite artist! I discovered her on Seth’s PULSE. This entire set is to die for! I love her style and her sense of sophistication is stunning. I thought they were digital at first, but after reading descriptions at etsy, it looks like they are all paper and paint. She is self publishing several books of these collages, some with poetry.
Here is what she said about her style:
Um….I am pretty wordy so this is hard for me, but here goes. My work is mixed media collage based, heavily influenced by emotion and a sense of longing. Pieces are shrouded in metaphor and color to create visual poems.(not sure if that makes any sense to anyone but me)
She has a great etsy shop and has self published some books that I think I HAVE to buy!
If you haven’t checked out Seth’s Blog yet… get over there right now!