This life we's strange, painful at times, but oh so beautiful.

I am a fusion dance artist and teacher, a fire dancer, and a visual artist. I draw inspiration from nature, music, and the amazing people that come into my life. I am also a conservationist who makes jewelry and found object multimedia craft type art in my spare time (when I'm not reading, writing, or lighting things on fire and dancing around with them). I love to dance barefoot on the beach, watch the stars move inexorably across the heavens, and to laugh with the people that I love. I am currently based in Greenville SC, working with Discordia Arts to provide unique and exciting entertainment to the Upstate.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Wherein I Make Use of Little Space and Create Happy Accidents

Silk Pillow Drying on a Kitty Litter Platform
 As a working artist living in an apartment the size of my childhood bedroom with another person, I have rediscovered that age old adage "make use of that which is available." The hardest thing to come across here is space...and in silk painting, you need a lot of space. Space to store dyes, space to paint, space for items to dry, space to spread out newsprint in order to steam your silks, space for steaming, for washing, for point should be quite obvious.

Usually, I paint silks on my coffee table. It is large enough for me to work on all but the largest pieces that I paint (one of the main reasons I haven't been making very many veils or large wall hangings in the past few years.)
Silk Pillow Drying On My Wine Rack

But, once again, life lessons imparted to me at a young age by my father come to play a part in my professional development. My father has a place for everything, even a special nail in his shop on which he places used twist ties and one next to it on which he places rubber bands. If you were to walk into my father's shop and tell him that you had a broken whossawhatsit and that you needed a small piece of plastic pipe, he would take you to the plastic pipe department and find the perfect piece. If he couldn't find the perfect piece, he'd cut you one or in dire circumstances, somehow create the perfect piece of pipe using glue, a dowel rod, and some plastic that he had lying around.

Extra Limbs Made Her Far More Normal

I'm not as good as my father about knowing where everything is, but I have a "cloth department" and an "adhesives" area where you can find multiple types of glue, tape, and even my stapler. The talent that I have inherited and developed is the ability to make use of whatever I have available whenever I need something that I do not this instance, since lack of space is one of my biggest problems, I have found a variety of ways to create the space I need.

When I paint, in order to let one piece dry and work on the next, I create drying racks with old kitty litter containers. Once pieces are dry enough to remove from the rack but not completely dry, they are then placed "somewhere" to dry - in this instance, draped across my wine rack.
I use this inherited talent in other ways...happy accidents. Sometimes I don't sketch a piece out before I put the resist lines on the fabric and I just free hand it. In this case, I began with her head, the far left arm, and her hair, I then filled in the body and added an arm. She looked strange, out of proportion, and I decided that what she really needed was an extra set of arms and legs.
Because that's how you fix someone who is disproportionate - you add extra limbs...why not?

Ok, so I admit that it was a strange solution and the final piece did turn out slightly odd, but I love it. Maybe she's a goddess, or maybe she's in the best art, the viewer gets to decide exactly what/why is happening in this piece. I'm just happy that it happened.

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