Nov 2, 2009

Contrived intuition

I watched all of Teesha Moore's videos this morning that she has recently posted to her blog. Oh boy, I love watching her work and hearing what she's thinking as she does it. It makes my head spin with urges to work in her style.

I think the word I've been looking for to describe my own work is contrived. Teesha uses the word now and then in the context that she wants to change pieces she collages so they don't look so contrived. I think she means too perfect, too neat and tidy and therefore empty of expression. She uses the word intuitive alot. I think I work intuitively but I don't work very expressively or gesturely. Now, everytime I write about where my head is in regard to my work I get a bushel full of compliments and loving lectures. I want you to understand that I am not looking for assurances about my work, maybe admittedly my thinking and questioning (cuz we all like to know we are not crazy), but I am truly posting my journey on this blog. I'm sharing what's in my head. Eventually and hopefully, you'll continue to read my blog to see how I work these things out, how I overcome or ignore the moments of "stuck". If I don't question my work from time to time, I'm not sure I would keep striving to find my true voice, my true work that is buried down deep in my soul somewhere. I think those times of questioning are that deep down art trying to get a little closer to the surface.

A strange thing has happened to me. Up until a couple of weeks ago, I found myself increasingly very attracted to surealsim and digital artists that use vintage images to create these crazy odd elaborate stories. I started to try and think about working in that direction, but still working with scissors and glue and marrying that crisp odd surrealism with a mostly non-digital presentation. Then, I started Nancy Baumiller's class and I foundmyself trying to work in this crazy un-crisp, very expressive zetti Teesha Moore journal style. And I love both styles and find myself torn and confused about which direction I want to work in or trying to figure a way to work in the two styles at once while still keeping me in my work. I think it is these things that have brought on the questioning and self criticism you've been reading. But, please know that I love making art. I'm not about to quit or throw myself off a cliff. I'm just telling you about my journey.

So, I've left just a few links here to show the two very different types of work and artists I find myself in a love triangle with!

Martine Roch
Maggie Taylor
Casa Jordi
Paul Grand
Teesha Moore
Nancy Baumiller
Jade Adams
Roc Nicholas

I plan to flit amongst these styles and continue to keep playing and continue to keep questioning. I'm even taking a mini-break from creating. That really means, I'm not pushing myself as I had been, to make a set number of pieces a week. I'll make when I can't fight the urge and won't make if I have to force it. In the meantime, if I'm not around much, I am finally working on collage sheets and scanning, scanning, scanning, photoshoping, photoshoping, photoshoping, etc. It's taken me about 10 hours a sheet so far so this is a big project for me. I have a couple of sheets done but want to wait until I get a few more before I "release" them.

Lauren went back to school today and we kicked the flu out of the house over the weekend. All is good.


gaby braun said...

Thanks for this links! Great artists? Do you know Hope Kroll and Gracia e Louise. Both are great collagists too. I understand what you mean, but you must not look for your way, only work and the way made it by himself.
Take a look to at Ronaldo Fraga, a brazilian Fashion Designer
I'm sure you will like it.

gaby braun said...

I would mean: Great artists!!!!

Hayley Egan said...

Doing this will be really good for you. I'm so glad you are feeling pulled towards a new style. Don't let those feelings make you feel anything negative towards your current way of working. It's divine, and so will your new work be!

Terri Kahrs said...

This morning I sat in my jammies and had a Teesha love fest - Brilliant videos. I absolutely loved watching her creative process.

Then I went upstairs to play. After that little session, I totally understand your dilemma. Between Nancy's class and Teesha's videos, I'm conflicted. Sooo many different techniques. Soooo many different ways to "make art".

Glad to see you're taking time "away" to listen to the whisperings of your creative soul. Bet those collage sheets are outstanding. Also . . . excellent news to hear that the flu has passed and your daughter is well. Hugs, Terri xoxo

*jean* said...

sharing the journey...that's what it's all about, sister...glad that flu bug is finally gone!

Kim Mailhot said...

I love that you share your artist journey with us, Marsha. The thought that came to me is that maybe you are coming to a place in your art where you just need to play and experiment and maybe take the pressure off of having to create "good" art of any kind for awhile. Process stuff rather than product stuff. Then, maybe after you have played for a good long while, with styles and technqiues and suggestions from others who inspire you and throwing in things you already know an love along the way, you will find the voice that says what you want to say ! And in the meantime you can celebrate that you are taking the time to live a create life and learn new ways to be at the same time !
I wish it for you ! Big Love !

sharon said...

I have not watched Teesha's video's, nor do I think I will at this time, because I , like you, have been so confused from my more recent start in this medium. I looked a lot at Teesha's stuff in the beginning, and I too feel exacctly as you...I want old grungy vintage and zetti together and don't know how to make that happen yet. I feel if I watch Teesha's video's I'll go crazy..I am just trying to find myself, so I just keep going and going! Thanks for sharing this!

Jill said...

Thanks for including us in your creative journey Marsha, will try to follow up your links.

indybev said...

Thanks for the great links, Marsha. A couple of them were not familiar to me. Paul's work is a feast for the eyes! I've long been an admirer of Maggie Taylor. Did you notice one of her pieces is used in the opening of the TV show "Ghost Whisperer" every week?

Jade Adams said...

Hey worries girl just go with it...I watches the videos teesha posted on youtube..these were sooo inspiring to me...I love that womans art! But notice that she doesnt think for too long about things..this I also am trying to do...thanks for naming me among your inspiration..that is a great honor!! Dont fret...your art is fabulous and you are an amazing inspiration to us all!I too look forward to seeing your amazing collage sheets!!

Ragamuffin Gal said...

I love Maggie Taylor, I truly do!!! And can understand ~ I want to strive and grow too! I come and visit your blog often because it inspires and helps me grow towards becoming more authentic. Thanks for being real. Blessings!

Leslie said...

It's always a pleasure to read about your journey. I know it is sometimes so hard to verbalize that which is meant to be conveyed visually. It's hard for me to express why I like something; it's like Herbert Vogel said "Something goes from the eye to the soul, without going through the brain." It's that connection to my soul that I feel when I know I'm going in the right direction in my own work, and also when I am admiring someone else's. But don't ask me to put it into words! I wish I could...

roc said...

i think we all go through periods of creating and just being and going with the flow. it's essential to listen to the inner voice and do or not do. i think these periods of reflectiveness helps us move to a new space. you will do a great job with your collage sheets. i know you have lots of fans out there who will honestly love to have bits of pieces of marsha art! good luck with that!

Anji Johnston said...

Hey Marsha! I started my own blog and wanted you to know that you are on my list of favourite places to visit. Oh boy, do I understand that frustration of not knowing what direction to go in! I flit back and forth from Dada, surrealism, fine art and then back to the start never really quite knowing what I'm doing! I find it is best to please yourself and not worry about what others think. You are a talented lady and need to let your creative energy take you where it wants to be in that moment. Love following your journey of discovery and I look forward to every new post! Anji

Joy said...

Your travels of the mind are fascinating Marsha.

Elizabeth Golden said...

I think your style is fab, but it sounds as if you are just growing and evolving, that is good too, but mostly I just wanted to say I am so glad to hear your daughter is back on her feet! All is well with the world.

aliceinparis said...

I think that no matter what you try, your work will always have your quirky take on it "contrived" or not. It is fab, I know I know, you don't want to hear that.
I looked up the meaning of contrived, "Obviously planned or calculated; not spontaneous or natural, To plan with cleverness or ingenuity; devise"

I think every piece of art is contrived. We all sit/stand in front of what we want to create and think out what we are going to do next. There is ALWAYS planning of some sort. The materials you will work with requires planning, scraps, images, paint etc,and those planned materials help shape what will be created. Spontaneity exists too, because often what we plan/execute does not work and we move in a new direction.

I enjoyed the work of all the artists you showed. Especially Martine and Paul Grant. It is all in the vision I think. The scene we see in our mind's eye and want to share. What is in you will come out and will be different from everyone else's, no matter how hard you try to conform, what is in you is you!
Bla, bla, bla, don't know if I even managed to express what I wanted to but there you have it. Art is a personal thing and we all struggle, comparing ourselves to others but really, just keep at it and your work will naturally evolve and change and reflect the interests and places your head is at the moment. I think we take too much stock in what teachers say sometimes, it is after all, just their take on the world as seen through their experiences and values, so listen, evaluate and go your own way. You have your own unique and wonderful take on this world. Experiment with the new styles and what YOU like will win out.
Gosh I feel like I am lecturing, sorry. I guess I just feel sometimes that we fret too much. xo

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