Creating my Artworks is like going on the perfect date.
I know, could I get any more cliched?
But you see, the worst date I ever went on was my first date with my husband, and not only is it a heart-warming tale of social awkwardness, long silences and shy smiles it’s also a metaphor for how I approach my Artworks… especially my Fantasy Artworks which are a product of my imagination.
I first met my husband when I went with my new flatmate over to her boyfriend’s place and there he was, beautiful, gorgeous and he physically bounced on his toes when he met me.
Who could resist that?
Now, don’t get the wrong idea - I didn’t steal my flatmate’s boyfriend - hubby was the flatmate of
See, it’s not that kind of story.
The first thing he did was offer me chocolate.
So now, not only is my heart pumping with anticipation, but my taste buds are also firing with the sweetness that only chocolate can provide.
I don’t want to hit you over the head with the metaphor, but this is what it’s like with that initial idea for an Artwork. Suddenly, my gut is just churning with anticipation and excitement and a little fear if I’m completely honest.
If you’ve ever had that initial attraction with a guy / girl or someone who gets the blood pumping and the butterflies working their mojo, then you’ll get exactly how I feel.
Life is exciting, vibrant and all the possibilities are before you.
A couple of months later, after some brief encounters around mutual friends and me sitting through some of the most boring Doctor Who episodes on record, we go out on our first official date.
So now, reality sets in and the work begins; the getting to know you part. Things have moved from just a day-dream to actually doing something about it all.
Two things happened, kind of at once, that made this probably the worst date I’ve ever been on.
First, in situations where I’m nervous and uncomfortable, I tend to go really quiet. I actually border the line between Introverted and Extroverted but in stressful situations I can become close to mute.
Second, my husband is far more introverted than I.
So, what happens when an introvert and someone who’s so nervous she’s practically mute go on a date….
Yup, tonnes of awkward silences.
Broken up by some shy smiles and chinese food.
But pretty much just discomfort akin to nails on a chalkboard.via GIPHY
Now, you might be wondering how this relates to my Artwork creation metaphor… or if you’ve created anything you might already be getting it.
No, I’m not going to sit in awkward silences with you on a call… I’m well beyond that now. I may however sit in awkward silence with the Artwork in question.
This is what happens when creating, it can get awkward… and fast!
Things are working together and then snap it gets super uncomfortable. It’s nails on a chalkboard, mixed with dubstep, mixed with yodelling kinds of discomfort.
But that’s the reality of trying to turn anything from an idea into a finished product.
What I have is lots of practice in moving through that discomfort. Thank you, hubby!
So how does one go from worst date ever, to still being together 13 years later and married?via GIPHY
I’d like to lie and say that i got it together and managed to speak more than a dozen sentences.
I’d like to say I created some kind of mystery about myself that kept hubby intrigued.
But really it was just dumb luck that Hubby had the guts to ask me out on a second date when he was sure I’d say no. And I tried harder to work through the discomfort the next time around.
That’s how it goes. You work at it, you fight, your argue and then that Artwork becomes the love of your life.
Until I move on to the next one…
This is where I’m supposed to say ‘And that’s where real life and the metaphor part ways…’
Beyond the Metaphor and Into the Nitty-Gritty
My Fantasy Artworks are a labour of love and can take months to produce. They need to be designed, planned, researched, implemented (shooting etc), sometimes re-shot, edited and printed.
For my personal creations, it needs to be an idea I’m in love with before I can begin.
For collaborations on bespoke Artworks, I love getting to bring someone else’s imagination to life. I enjoy working through the process to tease out their ideas and see their reaction when it all comes to life. My own creativity is enriched through these collaborations and the whole experience challenges me to grow my skills.
I’m a photographer and Artist with a digital toolbox. My Fantasy works are a blend of photographs and digital artistic techniques to create scenes that previously only exist in my imagination.
For example, in my Chessboard series, the background trees were created from one image of a line of trees near my house. Then I painstakingly, copied, blended and created a magical forest, that only existed in my head. It took hours and it probably would have been faster to draw from scratch.
But this is my particular toolkit.
Yes, I can use a computer to mimic styles of painting and drawing, but when I blend images together, there is a lot of time in matching tones, lighting, shadows and perspective. These parts are created by hand.
The computer doesn’t tell me if the colours match, the lighting is right or if the composition is sound. All of that rests in my head, my eye.
There is no cheating. This is Artwork that takes hard work and miles of effort. It’s a craft that I’ve dedicated my life to, I am always working, learning, studying and perfecting what I do.
What about my non-Fantasy based work?
I am often inspired by the world around me. My landscapes, outdoor stuff, insects and other work that I stumble across in the world; it still has a creative and imaginative twist to it.
I don’t create photo-realistic scenes. I use expressive tones and dramatic contrasts to create an emotion in the viewer. I want to get the feel of the place across, its energy and I want that to inspire someone as much as my Fantasy works. It can take me days to edit a landscape. I work on it for a couple of hours, then I let it sit, I come back to it and think, is it enough? Is it too much? And I work a little more.
This is not the long relationship of my Fantasy works, but more of a three-day weekend of fiery passion.
I’m out of control with the cliches here… somebody stop me!
I’ve been heavy with the relationship metaphor, but working with me would be a relationship of a sort albeit with more structure and a set of guidelines we can both agree to before we start. How often I’d communicate with you. What we’d each do at particular stages of the process.
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I also send tips, tricks and inspiration for finding the perfect Artwork for you and your space, so even if you’re not planning to create your own artwork, there will be plenty of helpful information for your search on my VIP list.Discover:More About MeWhy I donate 5% of the profit of every sale to Beyond BlueBrowse my collections