More than one or two people have suggested to me ( When I have asked for a critique), that the "Easily Distracted and Prolific" tagline on my website's front page, might be viewed as a negative thing by future customers and clients. I understand the concern, but distraction, mistake making, and experimentation are the very reason for my prolific tendancies, and have always had a direct impact on my work.
I am currently working on a painting that is part portrait, and part narrative, and I've been thinking about layering some graphic illustrative elements onto the piece. So today, my plan was to create a sort of stencil, using the 3D laser printer, and some canvas paper. It's a straight forward sort of plan, I thought. I wanted to share how this all went down today, because for me, this morning was a really good example of my process.
I began by designing the vine/branch illustration in photoshop, which I then opened in illustrator, and created a vector image that the laser printer would understand.
I printed out (cut out) the branch, and after separating the positive from the negative shape, it was everything I could manage to NOT immediately change course and cut out a whole lot more branches and flowers, and make some kind of mobile or hanging sculpture with all the cutouts. I LOVED the whispy energy of that canvas shape. ( A project that is now swimming around in the back of my mind...."get in line, my friend")
After pulling my attention back to the task at hand, I sprayed the back of the stencil with a temporary adhesive and laid it in place on my canvas. From there, I brushed on the paint as carefully as I could. (note to self: Buy a few stencil brushes)
I waited a few minutes, and while the paint was semi-dry, I pulled back the stencil to see that some of the paint has bled behind the stencil a bit, and after trying to look at it objectively, I decided I didn't like it, crossed my fingers, and began to wipe off the paint as best as I could, with a damp cloth.
It was mostly working, and as I started to panic a little bit, I noticed that the wet paint had softened the paint beneath it, and pulled up some of that paint as well, and.... well.... THAT looked really cool.
Now I want to play with, and explore THAT whole idea.
Moral of the story: Finding your voice, is part experimentation, part failure, LOTS of mistakes, while keeping your eyes and heart open to new ideas.
Don't be so focused on the end game, that you miss the good stuff. ( not a bad plan in all of life, I think)
Have fun, and make LOTS of mistakes!