I've decided I'm ready to open my studio back up for photo sessions.
The shut down wasn't really intentional, but between Covid and life, I felt tired and in need of a chance to kinda 'let go', explore, experiment with tools I was intimidated by. To see if I could give myself another way, besides photography, to express myself through art.
And not for anyone, but myself.
So for the last year it's been used as an art space where my friend, B, and I set up a regular weekly practice following the prompts in Cat Bennet's Making Art A Practice. We drew, painted, collaged, used pine needles as paint brushes, tried out monoprints and used the time to experiment with a variety of processes, except photography. It gave me - someone who can't draw worth beans - to help see other forms of art as an exploration, without an end game in mind. Putting the camera down meant I had to try to visualize differently and not just rely on what I've always known when using a camera. Maybe tapping into another part of my brain. Having an opportunity to open up and splash a big splotch of paint on a piece of paper hanging on the wall was a form of catharsis.
Pick up brush.
Dip in paint.
Paint drips on floor.
Swoop onto the paper.
Allowing without controlling.
Whether that be me, the paint, the brush. Remove the preciousness.
Each session ended with a recap, without judgement. It wasn't about how 'good' the art was, it was the doing, what each other saw in our creations. Just putting pen/pencil/paintbrush/charcoal to paper and seeing what happens.
But also, not overthinking things.
I can't recommend it enough.
And though I still don't think I can draw - at least not in the traditional sense - I can see a style of my own, whether drawing from my mind or trying to replicate line drawings I find interesting. And with my dog's pretty strict snuggle schedule, drawing and doodling is something I can do with him snoozing at my side on the sofa.
Last month, for the first time, I participated in my own Inktober -- a month of daily drawings done in October -- and though some days were pretty tough to get motivated on I would at least sketch something rough that I could go back and Sharpie. It was about starting and completing something just for me. So between Inktober and the practice with B, I've pushed away my fear of drawing/painting and though I don't think what I created is bad or good, it just is, now existing as part of me and my art practice.
So, my studio is open again for photography, whether it's portraits with pets, humans or collaborations. Though I'm working to figure out a plan for opening it for other creative practices too, so if you want to come draw, paint or photograph sometime, let me know!
Thanks for stopping by,