Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Taking Flight

Last night I finally made time to begin creating something non-yarn related. I purchased the book "Taking Flight" by Kelly Rae Roberts on mixed media collage and have been reading and staring at it for over a month. I've always loved the look, artistic freedom and layers upon layers of creativity of collage art. I've been a long time admirer of magazines such as Somerset Studio; ooohing and aaahing over the beautiful creations within it's pages. I knew I wanted to give it a try but wasn't sure where to begin. This book explains step by step a few artists techniques.  

As a graphic designer, I was intimidated by the photoshopped digital collages using photos and textures that started gaining popularity in the late 90's. How did they achieve the right balance? How do they choose color adjustments? How do they make it look so right and not clumsy? I had a project that forced me to dive in and start experimenting with the digital piecework. It was all about trial and error. Even after this, the non-digital version of collage art seemed overwhelmingly difficult.

I wish I just dived into new creative projects without thinking about them too much. But I tend to read, observe, google, plan, learn and generally roll it around in my head far too long. So long that it becomes all the more of a daunting undertaking. Is my perfectionism slip showing? Then there's the tendency to think that I have to try to sell what I make. Why do I do that? Why not create for the sake of creating?  

I want to change, really. At least I took a first step last night and finally started on some small collage projects for practice. (See, there I go again, "for practice" because practice makes perfect. Ugh.) I finished one up this morning while having my coffee. My sister and her husband are flying to their vacation spot in Mexico which inspired me for the first one. After I finished, I glued it onto a card and am mailing it off to her today. It is far from perfect, looks nothing like the images in the book, is a bit strange looking and was just for fun. It's a start! And sometimes just getting started is the biggest step in "taking flight."

I have a few more projects started so will be making time to experiment and play with mixed media collage...finally!


kmkat said...

I am not an artist at all, but #2 son is a wannabe graphic designer. From observing him I discovered that making art -- for him, at least -- is trying this and trying that and letting it grow. Based on that, you are heading in the right direction.

Midwest Mom said...

I love collage -- it gives an artist freedom to create such an array of images.

It's good to try something new, isn't it? There is nothing like stretching the boundaries of what you *know* will be perfect. For me, it's the challenge of the new thing that holds my attention.

I hope you post more "practice" soon. :)

- Julia at Midwest Moms

p.s. I put you in my blogroll. :D

actonbell said...

Have fun! Don't forget that:)
I like collages too, because they look so free. You'll have to show us some of your creations.

ArtSparker said...

I find with collage that it's a matter of moving puzzle pieces around...there's still plenty of room for perfectionism in that, I'm afraid - it's not necessarily about wild abandon, at least the way I work with it.

Captain Smack said...

"I wish I just dived into new creative projects without thinking about them too much.

I think that's a good idea. I specifically make it a point to not research things before jumping in. That way you can come at it from a completely original angle.

Not just with artistic things, either. When I started writing software scripts, I was coming up with all kinds of creative solutions to problems that other people in my group had been trying to solve for months. The solutions were usually very simple, but they couldn't see it because they were all approaching it in the same old standard way.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Very cool! I admire your talent!

cube said...

I'm not a graphic artist (I used to draw a little bit) but I can relate to percolating thoughts way too long when it comes to writing and then editing them to death.

Live & learn. Maybe one day we'll learn to relax and go with the flow.

Your collage was very nice BTW.

Kittie said...

That looks like so much fun Balou! I have been diving into my tablet drawing trying to keep my mind busy and keeping the brain functioning lol. I love getting to see others creative endeavors :)

RennyBA said...

Great first step - good luck further on!

I wish you a Happy 牛 year!