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,
I bought a new camera last week, then returned it the next day because the lens stopped working.
It was smaller and lighter and meant to be easier on my body - the days of lugging heavy cameras and lenses around are numbered for me sadly.
Long story short, I decided not to get a replacement, but now I'm second guessing that decision. It ticked a lot of boxes on my wishlist, but it's kind of taking a step backwards in the gear world in some respects. And I didn't fall in love with it when I took that first image like I've done when pressing that shutter release for the first time on my other cameras.
As well as the camera tech stuff I take into account when photographing, there's also a connected feeling I get. It may be a wee bit different, depending on which camera I use, but it's always there, no matter what camera I'm using. I didn't feel it during that short visit and I questioned if it will ever come?
I know photography isn't just about the camera -- there's knowledge of the gear, the gear itself (camera bodies, lenses, filters), the human behind the lens, their unique perspective to their subject, post processing, etc. - reminding me of a story:
"a photographer goes to a friend's house for dinner and the host says 'you're a wonderful photographer, you must have a fantastic camera!'. At the end of the meal, the photographer says to the host 'what a wonderful meal, you must have a fantastic stove'!"
For now I'm mired in indecision so am sharing some of my test images, to "put them out there and add them into my work" to see if that changes anything for me. Some of the images have had post processing, some not.
Thanks for looking!
gj pearson art + studio
"If I didn't build it, I wouldn't get to see it."
~ gj pearson
Come along on a wee photographic tour of gj pearson's studio...and mind. A jam-packed space that overflows with art and creativity.
You'll see mystical, fanciful, odd, and endearing characters intertwined with wire and paper. Pounded steel sculptures and delicate drawings and paintings. Kinetic pieces that wind up or are operated by what seems to be a sewing pedal. All magical.
Along the way you'll see some embroidered pieces and handmade jewellery created by fellow artist and wife, Denise Kathleen Nicholls of Firehorse Designs.
And two very adorable cats.
-> gj pearson art and firehorse designs.
dale roberts ~ studio j
Part movie set, part stage set, all the mind of a creative genius.
For a complete tour of this studio which must been seen to be believed ~~
please click HERE.
somewhere to go: the premiere
The Victoria premiere of Somewhere to Go: Punk Victoria at the Roxy!
"By tracing the roots and continuing legacy of the Victoria BC punk scene, this documentary explores broader themes of rebellion, culture and community"
If you missed it, watch their facebook page for more showings!
So proud of Paulina Ortlieb along with Rob Nesbitt, Steve Bailey and all the people involved in bringing this film to the screen!
the artist was present for 100 days
The artist was present, she is present... she is a present... she's a gift!
I wasn't the only one participating in the #100daysproject here in little old Victoria, BC. My friend Betty-Ann Lampman who is a stinkin' great artist and designer was too. (We're big fans of B.A. in our house... we have her collage, "Losing Game" on our bedroom wall, right under our tv so we can say goodnight to it every night.)
Based on the photographs by Marco Anelli as part of the documentary, The Artist is Present, (available locally at Pic A Flic Video) she created black and white paintings of 100 of the faces who appeared across from performance artist, Marina Abromović.
Betty-Ann knocked this project out of the park, she killed it, she gave it the 'what for'.
The local paper interviewed her HERE. She even had one of the subjects contact her to see if he could buy his portrait.
Anyway, she was nice enough to let me come over to her beautiful home and photograph her with a bunch of her original pieces scattered about her living room... she was just so patient while I had her holding poses and laying around on her hardwood floors. And at the end of it, she was looking forward to putting all the pieces back into their portfolios into the order in which she made them. Did I mention she was patient?
B.A.'s going to have a show in October 2015 at the Martin Batchelor Gallery in Victoria, so you should definitely check it out.
To see these pieces in person - all 100 of them - is truly magical.
landing safely in the moment
I posted these photos on facebook back in July... I never posted them on my website.
I guess I was in a hurry to share them because I was so incredibly proud of my husband that night.
He took a giant leap and landed safely in the moment.
Rob Nesbitt | Solo Acoustic Performance at the Copper Owl | July 10, 2014
Part of magical musical evening which included: Dixie's Death Pool, David P. Smith and the Malibu Kens
Rob perform songs from his new album by The Suite Sixteen plus an extra little treat.
Video of his performance, taken by Kent Bendall, can be seen HERE
back alleys + monster sisters + a hug
It was a day full of stuff... going here, going there, going back here, going back there... but then some fun stuff... photos in back alleys, visits with The Monster Sisters in person at their art show, visiting with adorable Janie and then to top it all off, seeing a little dog getting a nice big hug.
the old, re-told :: on location
Head on down to Kay's Korner in Cook St Village to see some of my Old, Re-Told photographs on display at the place where it all began - and of course check out the adorable store with some of the funkiest experienced goods in town! In fact, the set dressers of Gracepoint have even bought some pieces for the show!
Owner Karin is an incredible artist herself and has been my pusher over the last few years when it comes to the world of vintage kitchen utensils! Thanks Karin!