Blogging 101 has me living across new worlds… even eating sweet, baked ‘black’ bananas… well… I am 1/2 Fruitarian.
Elle Kae published a list of iPhone apps to enhance blogging posts. ‘ABM; A Beautiful Mess’ sounded invaluable and I spent $1.19 to buy it.
In well-connected Collage Circles I am known as; “The Particle Princess”. This is my beautifull mess: in photo essay form, because last week’s assignment (post in a style you don’t usually do) hasn’t been done.
These first two were made using Collage layouts and my Photographs.
This one is created using my ‘In-Camera Collage’ and ‘ABM’ Borders; chevrons, shocking pink dots, and ribbon-like script.
Three iPhone Photos captured on Denman Street, in Vancouver’s West End, were set into the Collage Layout. I then added an ‘ABM’ doodle and chose ‘Lorinda’ text to type the word: What!
Made completely with ‘ABM’ Collage Features. Later I loaded this image into Instagram, vignetted it a bit, and added a Caption: “PLaYgrOunD”
Here is a link to Elle Kae and the article: http://ellekae.com/2015/01/22/top-iphone-app-roundup/
I awake from a dream holding onto Julie with my arms wrapped around her waist. I’m saying that my Mum is just wanting to buy as much time as possible before she dies of cancer.
In this dream I see a leopard print jacket with a candy pink, pink bow, at the top of the neck – who’s touching my clothes?
The walk to Ambleside is littered with abandoned logs.
A collage collects along the low granite wall where the seams of blacktop meet with the rock.
The wind presses forcefully against me like a new lover. It takes all my strength to walk forward into it.
The clouds spit at me and a crow sprays white splotches across my black umbrella.
I leave the library on my way home with three heavy books curled into my arm none of which I want to read when I get home.
My Mother’s apartment building shivers in cold grey as I walk by. I let the wind pull my hair across my eyes so I don’t have to look into the dark empty windows where she once resided in warm lighting.
I tell myself all along that nothing matters but the feeling of being under twelve today and noticing how connected I am to all of nature as I walk home in fluctuating weather conditions.
Once inside I put on something warm, wipe the bird doo from my umbrella and brew bancha tea. I ignore the days’ old rinsed dishes and the clean laundry waiting to be put away. I can’t scrub a sink or address an envelope right now. I turn the ringer off on the phone, and relax into nothing.
I have read of women with a family of 5 children and a business to run, a husband and meals to cook, going to University to get their Master’s or Doctorate degree and still doing charity work, socializing, and looking immaculate; that’s where I got the idea I could go to University to get a BFA.
I hesitate to write this. Yet it saddens me to frequently hear from women I meet, who would love to become artists, how they stop themselves with notions of so-called sensible reasons.
This was: My Journal entry August 6th, 2001. It came from a hand-held cheap, Mead, Five-Star in a class by itself, spiral bound,Neat Sheet Perforated Pages, with 200 ruled sheets, and 400 ruled pages.
Runnng a family is at best fun and rewarding but a woman needs to be as free as her husband and children to be an artist, even if it only means designing her life to fulfill her dreams. Dreams that don’t cost her her family, but allow her to feel proud of accomplishing her vision.
When we are in our teens we have a million ideas – do these ideas get pushed back – do they become expanding waistlines, huge backs and hips?
If you had a short sentence period of life left to live because you are dis-eased would you make certain that you cleaned the house, picked up the cleaning, paid the bills, washed the car, and did lots of laundry between doing all the other self-imposed obligations you didn’t want to do when you felt forced to say yes.
Each day is so precious even when you are not compromised in your health.
My personal discovery is that nothing in the house changed while I went to University full-time for two years. (Notation: two years for a diploma worked into being five for a degree). The dust still sat on the top of everything. The house still looked the same at the end of a day even when I hadn’t spent ten hours wandering about in it.
The same little imperfections were on the walls. The messy areas, where there was no other place to use the messy items or to store them, still struck me in an uncomfortable way; even though I had not walked past them a million times a day, as in the past, wondering what to do with them.
But while the house lived its life without me, I created hundreds of projects, got a diploma in Studio Art and following that a BFA degree, showed my work in galleries, was published on the cover of two literary journals, wrote, painted, entered juried competitions, and put my work on the Internet. And I didn’t know I had it in me when I was taking the garbage out regularly for something to clean up.
Art School was one of the dirtiest and messiest places I had ever worked in. I learned we were focused on the project not on our surroundings We had great relationships; we learned what we had never known about ourselves and each other. The mystery of life came upon us and we had feelings; strong feelings!
We became sleep deprived and were told to do things we had never dreamed of. We were let loose!! I called the courtyard full of industrial junk our play pen: our toybox. Sometimes we felt isolated when we worked and sometimes we worked in groups.
There were many times I ate pizza, celery and peanut butter, plain bread, cereal, or junk near the end of a term, but it did far less harm than resenting the doing of something I no longer wanted to.
There was one time when I had to wear the same clothes for three days – that’s about as much inconvenience as I remember. (Notation: This is when I remember feeling like a REAL artist having read up on Louise Nevelson, one of my favorites, who would roll on and off a small bed in her studio wearing the same clothes for days while she worked on a wall-size sculpture.)
I never knew a house could run itself. My family was amazed and thrilled with the difference in me. My secret self shone. And to my amazement they all knew how to look after themselves. It wasn’t a slice; I have never worked harder in my life; had only 5 hours sleep a night, worked 7 days a week, and pushed myself to the, and beyond the, limits of my imagination.
Every new term Dad would go into the hospital for a couple of days for cancer treatment. Usually he announced it without any warning and always when a printmaking project was due. Our business dropped when Bailey, our soft-coated wheaten terrier of 14+ years, got old suddenly and collapsed. For seven months I was sick at heart with the thought of soon losing her. Bills piled up and at one point I measured the pile: it was over 10 inches high. We had a robbery in our home and lost $25,000 in property that we were very fond of; some was sentimental.
What a blessing to have something so rich to focus on as my art: my heart’s desire. It was a ten year dream that still continues. Our wheaten had a seven month old age and died a natural death, my Dad died in the hospital on the 3rd day after an operation a year before my graduation, and a very close friend died soon after. I couldn’t prevent the deaths and I couldn’t control other lives either.
What I have learned to do is concentrate my attention on my gifts and talents and make something from these instead of living through other people’s lives: ie. family, friends, people in newspapers, on TV, celebrities in magazines, etc.
How does your own life look, could you write a story about turning down a different road now and becoming what you dreamed you would when you were still in high school?
I consider my journals a collection of me! – in a visual and voiced format. A formation of me; a framework generating a material composition of my days.
Working my way through fashion magazines reminds me of my teens when I reverted into them for place and inspiration. Each glossy page announced the promise of a beautiful future. I spotted people I needed to adopt as role models. The pages whispered of excitement and destinations like Paris and New York.
If you see something in a magazine that makes you think of a friend, clip it out for them, and send it off with a hand-written card or note. My friend Sonny always reaches into her handbag as soon as we sit down together for coffee out, and produces a small sheaf of magazine clips for me, to inspire me. I rework hand-me-down jewelry into new designs by re-assembling elements from multiple pieces. Sonny’s thoughtfulness has led me to new ways of seeing and inventing.
My friend Elaine provides me with three huge shopping bags of fashion mags and one of Vanity Fair annually. She passes them along to me because she knows I need them for collage, and subsequently, I pass them along down the line to friends who are also artists. I keep beautiful floral file folders available for the parts of mags I’m saving. One for articles, one for writing prompts, and one for design tips and ideas. Oops… there’s more: one for creative ideas for paintings and the fifth one is for photographs I admire for their lighting, composition, or novelty subjects. Magazines make excellent reference tools when you slip a piece of silk ribbon or a lovely bookmark into the pages you’re interested in re-visiting.
Begin this art exercise by cutting out things you are attracted to for just twenty minutes. Don’t think about it. Pretend you’ve won a shopping spree and you’re just grabbing everything you can and throwing it into your basket. Have a pretty basket beside you and drop your clippings into it.
These will be, what I call your ipages, or your VIP’s: Very Important Pages. Spend ten or fifteen minutes arranging these on a few large pieces of paper. Choose any background to attach them to. I like pure white or lined, but you decide on the color that best resonates for you and then take a gluestick and secure them neatly to the papers.
Now lay them out and contemplate what you’re seeing. How do you like this glimpse of your inner workings?? What shapes repeat themselves? What colors dominate your collages? Are there ways for you to make changes in your wardrobe or environment using these ideas and objects. A new tabletop display perhaps or outrageous accessories to liven a conservative outfit. Take time; sit down and record your thoughts and feelings about the work you just accomplished.
Flower and garden magazines offer beauty in landscape that can be cut out and pasted over a nondescript book or journal to enhance the cover. Used bookstores have so many bargains jumbled on shelves or tables you might want to pick up a good solid one. When you get home with it you can paste or staple a fresh sheet of paper over a page and make it presentable for attaching particles of fabric, color swatches, ribbon, stamps, photographs; the choices are unlimited. As an alternative, gesso can be brushed over the page and left to dry, and now you have a plain white sheet to work on. Yes, it may be a little imperfect, but in art that’s all the better to show life in matter.
Go inside your ‘new’ journal, your source and improv book, your altered book, and live between the pages for awhile. Photograph some of your results and post the pictures inside. Send me images to post here and we can all be inspired. Failing that show them to your friends and help them try something new; bring them to my blog to view these examples. I remember when I bought my first journal; I could hardly think of what to do, or write down in it, or even what to collect in it. Now the family is horrified wondering how many truckloads it will take to clean out my studio when I… well, you know when. How many trucks it’ll take is open for debate.
It’s the beginning of the question session at Vancouver College of Art and Design. I have been invited to talk to Fashion Merchandising students about my art and process by Jannette Maedel who is teaching these students fashion writing.
I wear Acne jeans!
Is the beginning of your design process the same every time? Describe your process.
My process is always changing and evolving; fueled by my emotional nature.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
From nature, lucid dreams, the history of art and design, cultural – visual milieux.
Do you ever fear that you will run out of ideas?
No – never! I fear I’ll run out on my life’s timeline.
Who do you do your art for: yourself or an audience?
I do my art for myself because I can’t not do it: it’s pervasive and permeates all that I am. I like others to see the work and experience it.
How long does it take to complete a piece of art?
From 27 minutes all the way through to no boundaries of time (infinite). Every project is unique. Each one depends on process, and process depends on the following factors: money, research, support, supplies, environment, market, resolution, time sensitivity, and the ‘Artist’s Zeitgeist’.
What was the last book that you read? Did it influence your work?
‘Second Sight’ by Judith Orloff, M.D. Orloff is a psychiatrist and psychic who tells a compelling story revealing her courageous journey to embrace her psychic gifts. All of us are born with psychic abilities and this ground-breaking book will show you how to recognize psychic experiences in your everyday life. The book is hard to put down. It’s had a powerful effect on me and I’ll likely see its influence on me as my work evolves.
Do you keep some of your art or give any of it away?
I donate at times to fundraisers. Some has been given away.
Do you listen to music when you work?
Usually I have music playing. I listen to jazz – sometimes blues or classical.
What do you mean by, “Harmony is a velvet universe?”
Years ago when I first said this, I believed peace could be universally achieved. More recently I feel my belief to be purely utopian. Warring parties have existed for-ever and my words are my wish, they’re my divine dream, my intent. I want to fell weapons with mindfulness and love. Wesley, a student in yesterday’s class, has written: “As hard as we all try to make the world a perfect place it will never happen. I once heard that angels need demons…and it’s true; how do we know we’re doing good if there is no bad to compare it to?” www.wesleyjbarisoff.blogspot.com February 17th, 2010 ‘is it just me or is it harder to breathe‘?
What specifically in the natural beauty of Vancouver inspired you with your work?
Mountains, the sea in all its moods, trees, flowers and flowering shrubs. I have invented a color called: “Vancouver Grey.” It is a distinct color I see all around me in our atmosphere. This perfectly balanced neutral shade needs to be manufactured to compete with “Payne’s Gray”. “Vancouver Grey” weather makes an outstanding background for photographs; it reflects detail and adds extra depth. Shoot when it’s overcast.
Who are your favorite artists?
Robert Rauschenberg, Louise Nevelson, Hannah Hoch, Alexander Calder, Edouard Manet…too many to list. I used to sit for hours in the fine arts section of the Library at the University of British Columbia in the late nineties and pour through every book, over and over, page by page until my head was reeling with colors and lines and tangles of inspiration. This old building that housed the library designated a large concrete room to visual arts. I very much felt like I was below ground. The few windows were inside and small. The glass was frosted and all the panes had chicken wire fastened over them. I loved moving a stool along the aisles and sitting hunched over under flickering fluorescent lights dreaming of all I could construct. I could hear the dark. The cold weather rained on the other side of the walls and this was like music to mentally create by. Strangely, I seemed to be the only one in there late at night which added another dimension to time and art absorbing me and taking me in fully.
When you were a child, did you dream of being who you are now? How did your dreams and expectations shape the person you are today?
When I was a child I was skittish; abrupt noises, adults, energy fields…often caused me to experience anxiety, moods, and sometimes fatigue. My dreams were relentless, aggressive toward me, and saturated with color. I’m passionate about continually learning and doing new things; this has kept me shape-shifting as life unfolds.
What are your favorite styles in photography?
Still Life, Social Landscape, Street Photography, Milieux of Cities and People, Reflections, Fashion and Nudes.
What tools do you have “on-the-go” for inspiration?
Color always, and a jillion beads, trinkets, buttons, drawers full of saved paper, dried bones and flowers, one dead bird, photographs, magazines, books everywhere, my Maternal Grandmother’s Love Letters, rivers of sentimental clutter and a narrow path to navigate through. Sometimes I feel “crazy overwhelmed” with it all, yet I know I would be depressed and despondent without it. These papered boxes, tablescapes, and shelves are reminisces of people, places, times, and everything in my life. Even the insides of the cabinets look like collage. As a full-time artist, I cannot relate to all my clutter as a conglomeration, when I can “legally” call it an “assemblage”.
When you write, do you prefer writing in a quiet place or do you write anywhere?
I write anywhere, everywhere; sometimes even as I walk. I always tuck a few index cards into my pocket or purse when I go out so I can make notes and record observations.
I love your poem about the pair of jeans. What inspired you to write about that?
‘A Pair of Jeans’, came through while I was sitting in a group at Emily Carr. We had been meditating and doing warm-up exercises when this flowed through the tip of my pen. Poetry comes through me at odd times. I don’t sit down to write poems. Someone said the poem reminded her of Rita Wong’s voice in ‘monkeypuzzle’.
Wong’s poetry often addresses her relationship with her environment. Her poems show a close connection with nature and a support for local product, while expressing distaste for genetically modified foods. In forage, her poem ‘the girl who ate rice almost every day’ encourages the reader to look up Monsanto in the US patent database, and see how many patents there are for genetically modified foods, including the type of foods affected. There is also a poem, ‘canola queasy’ dedicated to Percy Schmeiser, the Saskatchewan farmer sued by Monsanto because genetically engineered canola blew into his fields. Her work challenges the reader to think about how they effect their environment. (Wikipedia). I see now from the excerpt above that Wong and I share the same sentiments regarding seeds as life and death. Over the weekend I will post an image with text I’ve created Re: Monsanto.
What advice do you have for young artists and designers?
Be 100% yourself! Be authentic, explore, read, be curious. Delve into photo and art history for inspiration, then put your own twist on it.
Having written this up as a blog, I noticed these questions could be used to draft an Artist Statement. Go for it!!