This body of work began with a creative block.
For anyone familiar with the creative process, this is a not an uncommon occurrence but it’s frustrating and terrifying all the same. I have been known to pace around the studio for hours and/or stare into space, hoping an idea will surface, all the while wondering whether I’ll ever be able to make another piece of art.
Of course the ideas always flow again, eventually. I have learned over time that (at least in my work practice) a creative ‘drought’ is a signal that the work needs to change, to evolve, that limits needs to be pushed. I am also reminded of the vital importance of play which many of us forget about in the seriousness of adult life with careers and responsibilities. The act of play differs for everyone, but for me it means the studio enters a state of complete chaos, music blaring and there are pieces of paper, notes, cups of tea and tools strewn across every available surface.
Sometime in the last few months, somewhere in the chaos of my studio emerged studies and photographs centered on fabric suspended underwater. I have long been exploring ways of using fabric in my work and the photographs were taken with great speed as the cloth floated through the water making fleetingly beautiful shapes before it drifted away out of each shot.
Many hours and hundreds of photos later, I began developing a series of complex almost map-like drawings which were then painstakingly overlaid with detail work to provide a sense of movement in the final piece.
Artists have a role to capture wonder, beauty, meaning and metaphors, and share it using visual means. I also think it’s important to share the process; the journey involved in making art. It’s hard (but hopefully important) work, with long hours spent toiling away, a few moments of inspiration, a lot of tea-drinking, and a little bit of dancing in the studio to very loud music.