11" x 14"
painted paper collage on matboard
This piece was meant to be a companion piece to this one shown here. I started to work both of them at the same time which is something I don't normally do. When I start to do something that is out of the norm for me, I often have to stop and ask myself why it is that I am deviating from my routine. It's important to be honest about things. Maybe I am genuinely interested in another approach to working on these pieces. I search inward to see if this feels right. If things don't feel kosher, then I look a little more. More often than not I uncover a hidden motive. This time I realized that I was working two pieces at once because I saw someone else do this; someone who is a professional painter with more experience than me. I also felt a little pressure to produce more work. God knows why but it's true. So, I stopped. I covered up the other piece and just worked on one piece at a time. That felt more like me.
There are reasons (and benefits) to work two or more pieces at once. I think the thought process has to do with efficiency and cohesiveness. Perhaps if you are an artist who needs to generate work for a show or gallery this practice could make sense, time wise. It could be that if you have multiple pieces in process in front of you, making marks on them at the same time, then they are bound to come out together as a related group. You might be trying out one idea in multiple ways or maybe are experimenting with a few materials to see what they can do over a broad swath of applications. Whatever the case may be, I am certain there are benefits to having several pieces going at one time.
For me though, I am not a multi tasker anymore. I can do one thing at a time and that is it. Working on one collage, finishing the idea, and then moving on to the next thing is the way I work best. Yes, I get ideas for other pieces as I am working so I write those down for later. That is what my sketchbook is for (it's a journal as much as a sketchbook). Or maybe I have a question that needs investigating (I ask a lot of "what if?" type questions as I work) or I learn something about new materials to try. I write all that down and deal with it at a later time. Really, it's just one thing at a time and that's that. It makes me a slow producer but that will have to be OK.
I often write these posts with three types of people in mind: myself of course, interested laypeople/other creatives, and beginning artists. I mention beginning artists but I don't mean those with a fresh BA degree. I really mean people that have been at their art for awhile and who are getting back into it. Or maybe just those of us who work on their art steadily but have questions. I honestly mean for my reflections to be useful. So, if you are reading and you can think of someone who would benefit from the discussion, please tell them and give them the link to my blog. I am trying to get my writing (as well as my work) out there in order to connect with others.
Thanks for reading,
work for sale