So much changes and evolves in the span of a decade. Curiosity lead me to look back at where my creative path has wandered since 2009.
In the last 3 days of this decade I’m taking a stroll back along the timeline that brought me to where I am now, and share some of the sketchbooks that came and went along the way.
Digital Photography – Photoshop Collage – DeviantArt – Open University.
At the start of 2009 I began an undergraduate degree in Computing & Design the Open University. I’d been doing freelance web design for a couple years and wanted a qualification to give my self-taught-ness some legitimacy.
Meanwhile the thing that was really making my heart sing was digital art.
Photoshop found its way into my life almost a decade earlier when I was living in a small space and messy art wasn’t a practical option.
By 2009 I was getting back into drawing and watercolors. I’d spend my evenings doodling these intricate squiggles which I’d scan and add to my digital collages.
I got my first digital camera around this time, so wherever I went I gathered photos as ingredients for art – pictures of textures and shapes and colors, buildings and backgrounds, to layer up and ‘shop together into these dreamscape images. Around this time I was really active over in deviantart – it was the first time I felt like I’d found my tribe with other creatives.
Art School – – – a world of discovery.
Although Open University is almost all distance learning, there were a couple of evening tutorials held in at a local uni. The first time I went the entrance hall to the Uni building was filled with displays made by the fine art students.
I was utterly entranced.
While I love the tech side of things – I was devouring all the finely granulated minutiae of computing, and a degree was a solid addition to my adulting repertoire – none of it gave me butterflies the way that all the swirls of color that art exhibit did.
In September 2010 I went to school for real and began a foundation course in art & design,
I took on classes in drawing, painting with acrylics, ceramics, art history and print making. I started visiting galleries and museums, I started seeing with brand new eyes. After years of aimless drifting I stepped into the beginning of my current life.
I took my digital art and began adding paint, stitching, print and collage to it. My eyes were opened to a new world of possibility.
Screen Printing – Exhibitions – Daily Practice – Life turned upside down.
The first half of 2011 was taken up with college, taking classes in drawing, 3D design, graphics, I learned how to set up an exhibition space, and I fell utterly in love with screen printing.
The day after I finished at art school, I bought myself this sketchbook and a set of Brusho inks. It was to begin an almost daily practice of moving colors around, playing, experimenting, and letting my imagination wander about into the pages of a sketchbook.
Meanwhile, life as I knew it began falling apart around me. I lost my best friend – Queen of all Cats – Mooly.
Then in a few short weeks, the second year course at college was cancelled. I lost my mum. My car got written off. Father-in-law got really ill.
Life was a free fall into chaos.
I fell into making art.
Blogging – 12 colors in 12 months – paper dying – daily practice – mixed media – back to school again.
With all the change and chaos surrounding, I needed to make shape to my days, so early in 2012 I began a blog to document my art making.
I photographed and documented what I was making, playing with, experimenting, learning. I set myself the challenge to fill an art journal through the course of the year, each month focused on using just one color.
I was diving deep into the world of mixed media now and I tasked myself with spending some time each day exploring. Cue: the ‘page a day’ project.
In September my college classes resumed and I threw myself in. Our first project was entitled Memento Mori. Bittersweet but timely, one year to the day of losing mum I presented my first video project, which I made in her memory.
to be continued ….
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