Sunday, February 28, 2010

The mind's eye wears many sunglasses

The studious nature of the creative mind can surprise the average person. Yes, we are not average, that’s what makes us individuals and artists. I have been talking with friends and family and have come to the conclusion that I am crazy. Not clinically insane, just crazy. Defining studious tendencies can take many different forms; the most dominant in my eyes is the inability to shut off the creative switch in our brains, which coincidentally enough is tied to the power switch. No matter what’s happening in our lives or where we are, at least from my experiences, we cannot stop the urge to create. Perfect example: recently there was a social gathering at one of my friends’ house, there were cans and bottles of many different designs sitting empty on a table. I observed a buddy of mine looking intensely at this table with what was essentially garbage that was ultimately headed for the recycle bin. He sat there for a few minutes staring at these cans and bottles until finally he rose from his seat and began walking to the table. He then started stacking the cans and bottles in a way that made them look less like garbage and more like a composition. Resourceful and creative, the artists mind is something that not many average people can understand. That’s not to say there is an elitism or exclusivity happening in our society. Far from that, we are all capable of being creative; every one of us on this planet, but there is a group that can’t turn it off. I guess that’s the reason we keep a sketchbook, or journal, or camera, some sort of form that allows us our outlet wherever we go. So being studious doesn’t necessarily mean being in a certain place for a certain amount of time doing a set amount of work. To me it means being prepared for that time when you do find yourself in a place that allows you to create. Crazy? Perhaps, but it’s totally acceptable and should be embraced.

what happens when you give
a bunch of students a paint brush and
a few gallons of paint in a skate park?

Sunday, February 21, 2010


I remember when I was six,
the air was cold and smelt like cotton.
I could hardly move I was so bundled up
but we were going sledding on the hill

my hill.

I felt like queen on that hill.
Overseer of the neighborhood.
I said it was an old Indian burial mound
but really the only thing buried in that hilltop was chickens.

From the peak, I could count ALL three of our brown cows.

It was mine to the taking, that hill.
I owned it with my sleds, wagons, and kites...


I was scared.

Scared to sled down the one steep side into the pasture's fence.
But I got pressured to go there- THERE- the forbidden side

It was exhilarating and terrifying.
I could not feel the bitter wind kiss my face.
I could not feel the jostle of frozen lumps beneath my sled.
Only speed.
I could feel only speed.

Then a jolt of pain and warmth spread over my face.
Through squints the whiteness contained garnet red.

I could hear muffled yells...It sounded like my name
I could hardly move I was so bundled up.
The air was cold and smelt like cotton,
I remember when I was six.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Sculpting an Illustration

In my illustration elective this semester I have been finding a lot of new and interesting artists.
Chris Sickels is an independent 3-D illustrator who created Red Nose Studio. He uses his experience as a self-taught mixed media sculptor to create three dimensional illustrations that can then be photographed for publication. These pieces are made on the miniature scale using cardboard, scrap fabric, paints, and other found objects.

I was excited to discover such a unique combination of techniques. I really enjoy the idea of using sculpting in other ways, rather than just placing work on a pedestal. These images are not only powerful but also subtle in their presentation. They take on both two and three dimensional qualities when combined into a single scene. This type of work also allows someone who sculpts to have the same job opportunities as a freelance illustrator. With the right equipment, any clay sculpture could also be turned into an illustration for print. The power behind these images is strengthened by a very believable backdrop, created through painting, and set making. This illusion of space bridges the gap between the two dimensional and three-dimensional arts.
These same skills have also been applied by animators to create full length stop motion animations, like Peter and the Wolf.

Saturday, February 6, 2010