“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself.” ― C. JoyBell C.
It has been a hell of a week, both personally and in Uni…as the dust settles and some sleep has been had, I have had time to ponder on what have I learnt and the direction I am to take…
Sometimes things in life can just get too much to bear, especially on your own. I am learning (as always) that standing up for yourself and speaking your truth from the heart is as essential as the air we breathe. That it is important to not only be aware of where you are lacking, but also where you are and could be even more successful, if only you would allow yourself to try. That taking responsibility and gaining back the control in your life, including being brutally honest with yourself and being willing to make the necessary changes is deeply empowering and essentially a game changer! What is it Gloria Steinem said; “The truth will set you free, but first it will p@*# you off”. It sure does, on both counts!
I love taking photographs, they are usually quite quirky, strange, in black and white with strong punchy contrasts and a slightly ambiguous edge to them. I feel that my drawing skills are somewhat weak, where as my desire and ability to express through ‘the lense’ isn’t. I now realise that I just want to make art using my photographic imagery, and as it is too late to change modules now, I will continue to explore in more detail some of the different ways in which photography and printmaking can be hybridised.
I want to look at identity, the self, the relationship with the self, the fragility of life, mind, body and soul. I live alone, fairly isolated with just my dog for company mostly and deal with depression and anxiety on a daily basis. I am constantly looking within to try help better understand myself to grow and evolve as a human being. Learning to love and understand myself so that I am more able to love outwardly. I have always been quite open about these things and have preferred deep conversations to small talk, so I figured it was time to use my art as a way of exploring and expressing this and myself more.
I was recently introduced to the exquisite and mesmerizing work of Lauren E. Simonutti (1968-2012) I just love it, the compositions, the subject, the concept, the style. It totally resonates with and inspires me.
“Over (five) years I have spent alone amidst these 8 rooms, 7 mirrors, 6 clocks, 2 minds and 199 panes of glass. And this is what I saw here. This is what I learned. I figure it could go one of two ways – I will either capture my ascension from madness to as much a level of sanity for which one of my composition could hope, or I will leave a document of it all, in the case that I should lose.” – Lauren E. ‘With her photographs she gave a voice to those that suffer in isolation.’ (Quote & text taken from 500photographers.blogspot )
Back in the studio:
Despite all the turmoil of life, this past week and being a third year student ‘trying to find herself’, I have had a few good studio sessions. Etching some test plates that I prepared at home, some working out better than others, but allowing the mistakes to happen and learning from them.
Facing my resistance to drawing and writing in reverse was a challenge, but this was a good exercise.
I also experimented with inking up some etched plates from last year, but inking them up as if they were relief plates as well as mixing it up and doing both! Rekindling my curiosity and love for the printmaking process. Remembering to log my colour mix recipes.
Attempting to create cyanotypes when the sun has gone in was rather frustrating, but sometimes it is just good to get out there and try it anyway! I think there had been some slight light contamination beforehand which is why it is a bit darker to start with. This process is a work in progress for me…more to come!
Explore more artists who have used photography in printmaking. Take more images that reflect my theme/concept. Create some photo etchings on aluminium plates using AB’s BIG ground and continue with the cyanotype process using found objects and my photographic images, whilst looking at ways to expand on them with perhaps text and or collage.
Give myself less of a hard time, but stay focused and keep going. The chaos, the being lost and found repeatedly – it is all part of the journey.