I felt the creative flow in January, I hope you did too. I owe a lot of the momentum to teaching. This month I've been teaching Creativity to mostly non-art major college students and Sketch Booking to mostly beginner adult students. Teaching is fascinating to me. It forces me to slow down and explain, step-by-step, processes I've been taking for granted for years. When I think about how I actually DO things, it brings a new level of intentionality to my work. So, thank you to all the students out there.
Speaking of, being a student is another crucial element to my creativity lately. I learn from my students, and my own teachers. I've been reading a lot and watching tutorials. I'm even swapping lessons with my friend, I teach drawing and he teaches drumming. Nothing gets me in the beginner's mind set like trying to coordinate my limbs to make music.
Bottom line, it's a wonderful cycle, trying to figure out how to learn, trying to learn more for my students and figuring out how to teach what I have found.
My creativity students collaborated to make an installation inspired by the work of Philadelphia based artist, Martha Rich. Try it yourself! For a weekend, keep track of absurd things you hear or read. Then use cardboard, gesso and acrylic paint to create your own speech bubbles and shapes. See how you can combine them in different ways to make an interesting installation!
These are some examples of student work from the Sketch Booking class, I wish I took more photos! The breakthroughs that happened were so fun to witness. One of the main things I tried to communicate is to remember that in a sketchbook, you can always learn what you can from the page you're on, flip to the next spread, and start over. The idea is to learn, not to make a perfect painting.
Now, to my sketchbook:
I'm about halfway through my sketchbook and here are some of my favorite moments so far. I picked up acrylic again, which is great for layering over drawings that didn't quite come together. I loosened up with some contour drawing and washy landscapes, and I taught a still life which I'm still thinking of finishing. I think this sketch book will be a good one for a sketchbook tour video, so stay tuned!
If you're wanting to dive into the process with me, and happen to live in the Hartford area, I'm teaching a Recipe Illustration class Tuesdays from 5:30-7:30pm for 4 weeks, starting February 8th at West Hartford Art League, then another Sketch Booking class 4 weeks starting on April 5th (also Tuesdays, 5:30-7:30pm). I'd love to see you there!
Here is the link to West Hartford Art League classes:
Spring classes will be listed soon!
One more note! If you want to shop my latest work or even just say hi, I'll be at Market 1115 Main on February 12th in Manchester, CT. The market will feature a bunch of local artists and vendors and is inside at The Firestone Art Studio + Cafe. The market runs from 10am-4pm, please spread the word!