I have had great fun this afternoon playing with my op-shop & garage sale ‘finds’ bringing all sorts of ecclectic bits together to make charms for the Artistic Journey’s Gyspy Journal Swap (18 of them) AND for Paper Trader’s Gothic Arch (6 of them). I have also integrated some of my jewellery making findings & beads to bring them together. I have used lots of turquoise, russett & metal bits for the gypsie pieces, they are quite random & each one is unique. The Gothic ones are still in formation, as I signed up for the swap about 3 months ago, there has been plenty of time for my ritual of ‘hunting & gathering’…….so anything that looked remotely Gothic I have snaffled it up & put it in my ‘project box’……………..Speaking of project boxes…..how do others ‘collect’ for a project???? I know that some artists only sign up for a swap AFTER they have completed pieces to send…….WHOA…….I could never do that…….FIRST I commit…….then I hunt & gather…..then I mull over what I have collected & look at what else I might need….I find it incredibly hard to get started on a project if I don’t have materials that I feel I can produce something with & that inspire me……I have tried just painting backgrounds in journals when I am having a museless day…….BUT I have found I can never finish them, they remain background pages
& don’t ever get filled, because I just dont’ get inspired by that. I have recognised the ‘Hunting & Gathering’ phase as a key part of my creating a piece or a project………….oh, but then I hate myself & think that I really can’t do this, & why did I even sign up for it…..I go through all of the hate & self loathing & self deprecation……then I start creating, working with what I have gathered………then the adrenaline kicks in & I become obsessive…….& I don’t want to sleep or work……..just art……..usually through the process, I grow to hate, like & love various pieces…..usually it is the addition of a single element, or a change of colour, or some minor change that helps me to like it more & it all comes together in the end……& I am usually happy enough with the outcome. I have found great liberty in recognizing my process……….because as I am going through it (and it is usually a variation of what I have described above) I will some times get stuck & not even want to LOOK at what I am working on…..it is then that I move on to something else, I look at my lovely books or go shopping for some inspiration (good visual merchandising ALWAYS inspires me). Being able to recognise where I am in my creative process enables me to know there is light at the end of the tunnel – I just have to ‘sit with’ being stuck & not get too agitated sitting there! I know the things that can move me on from there……..I just have to facilitate them.