Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Hello, Mojo.

It seems that just the act of writing out my frustration here helped release the block i was feeling. It could also be looming deadlines that did it, or both. Whatever it was, hallelujah! i'm back in the flow.

Mostly i've been working on swaps, but also some Christmas cards for my mom, and an altered book for a round robin group i'm in on flickr. Generally, i feel most inspired in the fall/winter. i'm not sure exactly why...something about the cold. And even more so if it's overcast or raining or snowing. There's magic in making a hot cup of coffee on a late afternoon in the midst of winter, and walking into my studio ready to play.

And when it gets colder, i drink a lot more coffee. That evening cup is my favorite - that's when it tastes the best to me. Why does it taste better than in the morning? i've always wondered that.

Lately i've been making lots of ATCs, or Artist Trading Cards. It's been fun doing these little works of art, and many of the ideas put forth there will eventually be put onto canvas. i have an idea for a large piece to hang on the wall based on the ATC below.

i made this for a swap based on the Paleolithic era. i could have hand-drawn the images rather than carve, but i liked the idea of having these as little stamps. The title of the ATC is pretty obvious - "Cave Wall". Hey, sometimes you just gotta' tell it like it is, no muss, no fuss.

i love texture, and i love acrylic mediums. Here i used Liquitex Flexible Modeling Paste. i've only touched the surface of what it can do. Apparently, due to its flexible nature, i can use it on fabric. Oh, imagine the possibilities!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Ancient fish carving and wallowing in the mire

i have been working lately, but things are moving slowly. i don't know what's wrong with my creativity, but it's as if i can't count on my muses, as if i've lost some of my mojo. Artistically, 2010 was a full year for me, laden with discovery about myself as an artist, my style and my process. There was a distinct point in the spring where the ideas were pouring out of me, and i remember thinking, This is it! This is my voice! i may never be without an idea again! And really, right now, it's not a lack of ideas that's the problem, it's the implementation of said ideas. i sit down to work and everything feels wrong. i struggle with things that should be easy. i find myself stepping away from my studio after only a few minutes, and finding some other outlet, but this is eating up precious time i could be creating!

i am frustrated because i can't find the source of my frustration. i am struggling and i don't know why...

But, like i said, i am working. Every few days or maybe once a week i manage to create something i feel good or even great about, something i'm proud of, but this is not the norm unfortunately.

i know this is a phase. i know this too shall pass, but right now that doesn't make me feel much better.

These images show one of the few projects that wasn't a struggle recently. i carved the fish image (a depiction of ancient Mexican art) for an ATC swap with the theme of "ancient". This stamp is one of my favorite carvings that i've done to date. i have ideas for a series of carvings with a similar theme.

Included in each partners' swap (there were 2 partners total) was the ATC featured in the first two photos, the bookmark you see in photo one (i love how that turned out - has a batik feel to it) and the card shown above. For the card, i used my Liquitex inks and they did the job quite nicely.

So, for now, i'm going to keep plowing through. i've been here before, in the artistic muck, and i'll be here again. i will break out of this, i just hope it happens soon.