It’s been a couple of weeks now since my art camp experience
and there continues to be plenty to reflect on. Here are a few of the gems I am walking away with related to art making
Creative work is re-invigorated when assumptions are
The magic happens when you find that balance between
experimentation, risk and order.
“You need to have faith in something bigger than yourself. If
you are the sole source of creating the ‘order’ you will always create the same
thing as you have a limited view of what order is” Karla Ness (our fearless art camp leader )
“It’s not our facility as artists people want to see – it’s
our soul”, Jill Waterhouse, Installation artist and fellow art camp participant
Completing a piece successfully is a very, very sweet thing
Failure (experimentation) opens up new possibilities and
directions for further experimentation and of course more failure. However out
of that chaos something will begin to take shape and you just need to follow
your instincts and trust the process.
Feedback is essential – the piece I completed is a much
better piece because of the feedback and critique process.
Tommorrow is the last day of art camp at the Blue Horse Farm – I’ll need to leave by 1pm, so it will be a short day – there are so many things I wanted to get to and didn’t and just as many things that I did do that were unexpected. The immersion in the world of visual art has been amazing and there is a lot to processI’m short on words this evening – but I have some pictures to share – As you can see -we got to work in this wonderful spacious barn – that’s light coming through the wood slats.
The first picture is me hard at work on a piece I finished today (yeah!) and I’m really happy with it.
Next picture is small gathering to discuss the work of fellow artist Jill Waterhouse (in orange)
The last pic is one of the artists – Judy, having a one on one conversation with guest artist Christine Bauemler
(on the right).
All for now – I’ll need to take some time to digest it all.
It’s thursday morning and I don’t have a lot of time – it’s my last full day at art camp and I can’t wait to dive in – I have so many ideas to experiment with, things I want to try and pieces I want to finish- I feel invigorated and can’t wait to get started. Yesterday was the day of getting pushed out of my comfort zone. It is that very thing that is opening up new possibilities and offering juicy questions.
Our guest artist Christine Bauemler offered informal group discussions and 1:1 sessions with each artist. Her insight, expertise and eye for whats happening in the work – and whats not happening is extraordinary. She is extraordinarily adept at drilling down to the essence of whats most important to you as an artist.
I have been challenged to let the beautiful edges of my pieces show and in fact to intentionally play with them – I’m still surprised at the resistance I have to that. I had always seen them as superfulous overflow – never as part of the art and they would get covered up with the mat. Because of how I defined "art" I was absolutely blind to the possibility there .
As a coach – I’m impressed with how this acts as a metaphor for my life and I’m seeing it in others work as well. So many great questions arise from this
Where is my edge?
What am I blind to?
What do I cover up?
there are more – and I have to run – What are the questions that you see?
Today was the first day of "Art Camp". A week long art intensive for serious adult artists. It’s been quite a while since I’ve given my art this kind of serious attention and it feels like a delicious luxury to spend a full 5 days making art. The host is artist Karla Ness and the camp is held on her farm; the Blue Horse Farm, in Wisconsin.
I’m excited and I feel a little bit of performance anxiety – oh my god, do I even remember how to draw? It would be so easy to hide behind what I already know how to do AND no hiding allowed. It is my intention to let myself experiement, explore new mediums and see what new images emerge for me (I’ve been doing the same kind of work for awhile). Most of all – PLAY, the best things have always emerged from play.
The day started out with introductions and staking out our "studio area" in the barn. It’s kind of like finding your power spot ala Carlos Casteneda. Then we had a great presentation by an art supplies expert Beth Bergman owner of Wet Paint (By far the best art supply store in the Minneapolis St Paul area) – She came bearing lots of samples to play with – cool and fun way to ease into things. I didn’t really get into making any "art" until afternoon. At that point, I became excruciatingly aware of how out of practice I am. I just had to dive in and re-establish a relationship with the materials and play and risk making bad art – which I definitley proceeded to do.
Late afternoon Karla offered a demo on creating your own pigment grounds – It got me excited to try some experimenting. I’m looking forward to that tomorrow and I plan to sit in on one of the life drawing sessions – I haven’t done that in a very long time. Watch for more posts from art camp.
So – What is your "Art Camp"?