Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Studio Series: UFOs & personal projects

Snowfall; Photo © Karen Thiessen 2013
An emerging artist recently asked me about personal projects, as in, did I make them. At the time I was hot-and-heavy in meeting multiple deadlines, so my answer was: "Not often." Today I would answer that question in the affirmative. Right now I find myself in the rare position of having a sliver of time until my next deadline, and I'm using it to play with old UnFinished Objects, a.k.a. UFOs, that are not directly related to my present studio practice. On Monday I spent about eight hours collaging a dollhouse and the top for an end table cobbled together from a footstool, a wooden Coke crate and a piece of plywood. I started the dollhouse about ten years ago and when it's finished it's going to be a light, and if I keep up my momentum, it could be ready for some electrical work by Friday. The end table could be done later today.

The dollhouse and end table projects are personal. They're for fun. But now I realize that personal projects feed my studio practice and give me fresh ideas. They also serve to give my brain a rest from my main work and allow new images and ideas to percolate. We've had more snow than usual and this is a perfect time to be hunkered in the studio making things... after a few hours of shovelling. I love the coziness that cold snowy weather invites.

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