Marilyn H.


Clearing the studio – One area is fine, inspiration on the board, lots of goodies, but I need to address the issue of the rest of it.  It has to be a space that I love and want to go to, at the moment it isn’t. Is this because I am having trouble finding my creativity or is it the room?  I suspect it is the former!

I began by clearing my ‘art drawers’.  I have meant to do this for ages but haven’t got round to it.  Rubbish in rubbish bin, reusable paper in the paper box, supplies that I don’t want but will be useful for tutoring workshops in a stash that is away from the studio.  Easy to access, in one place but not for my work.  Now I can see what I have!  Liberating.

Having done some rationalizing I went for the task of finding old work, cutting and reworking.  I found lots of trails, samples etc and decided to take some and combine with some weaving that I had done. Forced myself as this isn’t really me – which is what this is about – out of the comfort zone.  I didn’t enjoy this exercise, not satisfying, it seemed forced and artificial.  The outcome?!

An experiment, unsatisfactory to me so why? I think it is because it lacks meaning and content.  The original pieces were meaningful as they were trailing processes – shibori, indigo, weaving – but by doing this I am making in a meaningless way.  It needs to come from something, somewhere, it doesn’t feel like it has.

Haiku – I have always been curious but never explored so this is a good opportunity.  I abandoned the previous exercise and ventured in this direction.

My research has identified the elements essential for English Haiku and working within the limitations has been really exciting and rewarding. Yesterday morning found me creating in a way I have never done before.

Shivering in frost

Crisp, white, crunching underfoot

Sunshine, dripping, thaw

Bird sings cheerfully

Spring sun brings the world to life

Daffodils in bloom

The imposed limits bring focus – cut out all irrelevance, just use the core – an excellent theory to take into studio practice.