I went to see a exhibition the other day and whilst the nature of the art; photography, was not similar to what I have been concentrating on, the idea of the local coastline as a subject matter being a a focal point was. It was interesting to see someone else’s take on the Ceredigion coast and marine life (or lack of). Whilst this exhibition hasn’t inspired me in regards to my work, the images are still beautiful to look at and a visit to the art centre is recommended!
As I progress through University what continues to surprise me is how much inspires me to create. At the start of this semester I had no idea what I wanted to do in the printmaking module or what I wanted to focus it on , however there were two instrumental things that helped that. The first was a visit to the beach, obviously this is the sea, rock-pools, the sand and all the creatures that live in it.
A washed up fish, which I suspect was some kind of bottom dweller, was decomposing on the shoreline among the seaweed, although a slight bit stinky, the bone structure and remaining texture was really fascinating and I remember thinking at the time how it would make a interesting drawing.
The second part that really convinced me as to what I should do in printing was a visit to the local shops. After seeing the texture and contemplating using that as a starting point, when passing through the isle doing my daily shopping, the fish counter caught my eye, there were some fillets with the reflective scales facing upwards, the striped still glistening wet surface of the mussel shell and the shrimp and prawns with their nearly translucent but rigid exoskeleton, all of these established the sea creature theme that I have been working on. What I learnt from this semester most of all is that inspiration is all around us, we just have to let ourselves think and mull things over, time to consider what we have seen will eventually nourish that tiny seed of thought into a plant and that in itself will turn into fruitful rewards for us as artists either through the experience of creating artwork or the process of it.
One of the most difficult things about keeping a sketchbook for me is my hectic schedule combined with a huge disinterest in keeping one. Although its a assessed part of the University modules I still leave things until the last minute. Speaking to many of my classmates has revealed that they also don’t find it particularly helpful, they like myself work better on scraps of paper with tattered lists appearing everywhere and on anything. Ideas floating around my head that may come to fruition or not, suggest I may be part of the group of highly unorganised artists instead of the neat and systematic artists who favour sketchbooks. Sometimes I will enjoy completing a page or two in the sketchbooks if only for the crazy little illustrations that I love adding to most pages, I understand why sometimes sketchbooks are needed but I just want to create art instead !
I have included a little snapshot of some of my most recent page doodles in the sketchbook…
My 2 year anniversary with the lovely Luke called for something special, with a nod back to the past this little lino cut was happily received and thankfully so; it took ages to ink up the small areas with certain colours!