I have been focused on the Just Beyond collection artwork and building my small business. Illustration has been set aside and, oh! how I miss it. When I woke up this morning I decided to squeeze in an hour of sketching. Those sketches turned into macrame plant holders, caught fish on the dock, a reading list, and a zen cup of tea. Using my favorite three colors, I worked as I always do: little to no sketching prior, laying down fields of color, and then giving form and shape with watercolor pencils. After doing some additional iterations, prints of the best will be put into the shop come September.
(Flow of consciousness entry) Exploring the qualities of the complex relationship between mother and child, in addition to the self (adult female and mother). My initial thoughts are to create representational shapes of the roles. How do they interact? How do they interpret each other? Maybe think magnets - cycle of repelling and drawing closer, repel, draw, repeat. What shape is a child? What shape is a female or a mother?
In response to a quick sketch exercise created, a friend mentioned 3-D glasses. This has stuck with me as I think through how this relationship would be best described or transcribed or created or... . The layering of two colors, the creation of another color where overlapped is quite representational of this relationship. Cyan and yellow, green? Magenta and yellow, orange? Is magenta associated with female too often? Would blue be too strong or infer different meaning? Could I use ink? Watercolor? Screen print? My brain is completely overflowing right now! More to come.
"Bourgeois uses the spider, both predator (a sinister threat) and protector (an industrious repairer), to symbolise the mother figure."
I first learned of Louise Bourgeois in the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Gardens in Washington, DC. This was in our pre-kids era and we used to go for jazz and sangria on hot summer nights, dipping our toes in the pond. Wandering through the gardens, my intense fear of spiders kept me from one of the most fascinating interpretations of the "mother". It wasn't until I visited the Bilbao Guggenheim that I really felt a connection with these sculptures (still couldn't touch them though) and the artist Louise Bourgeois.
Quietly exploring her exhibition space along, my husbands rocking our sleeping one year-old, I realized some of my negative feelings and experiences toward "Hollywood" motherhood were being validated in an unexpected and pleasing way. Even now, thinking back, I'm not sure I can put the experience into words; I just remember the experience being quiet and loud, and eerie and comforting, simultaneously. To say the very least, it was unforgettable.