Archive for the ‘hiking’ Category

A moment of grace

This is the time of year at which I find it hardest to force myself to work. There are so many other things that I'd rather be doing; gardening, hiking, photographing…..

Often I partially yield and find ways of justifying my delinquency. Photographing is…. honing my artistic eye and gathering images that can be used in my work. Gardening is…. exercise and the flowers can be sources of inspiration, dyes, etc. Hiking is both of these combined as well as a way of rejuvenating my self and marriage.

I've learned recently that, while you have to keep working consistently, this type of work is more like "punctuated equilibrium". You work on a plateau for a while and then suddenly you advance rapidly through new techniques or media. Long periods of sameness are followed by unforeseen leaps of creativity. the corollary of this is, of course, that the leaps of creativity level out into new plateaus for a while.

Evening blossoms

The emotional roller coaster of this can be hard to take sometimes, especially when you crave that feeling of exhilaration that comes with the flash of inspiration and all you have before you is the hard work portion of artistry. The hard work part is, of course, the foundation for the leap you'll eventually make. If you don't keep working and practicing and trying and failing, you'll never be able to surge forward as you won't have the footing or the fuel.

So I'm chugging along nicely now and finishing things. It looks like I'll have some substantial results to show soon, if we get some rainy weather to keep me indoors!


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BlackheadTo forestall possible speculation that I'm not actually working or making anything original….

I'm currently working on a series of series of small pieces (yes, you read that right), designed to be hung as groups. The basic theme is The East Coast Trail and the foundations of the pieces are going to be my own photography, which I will over-stitch, paint and embellish as necessary.

I've been meaning to work on this for some time now, but have never had the full concept gel the way it did last night. It's interesting how that happens sometimes. I was idly daydreaming about which hikes would be fun to do this summer and how I could incorporate our experiences into smaller, more spontaneous pieces that could then be marketed to other hikers and enthusiasts of the trail. My aim was to make original, attractive and evocative pieces that wouldn't be prohibitively expensive or drive me crazy with repetition. Also, they would have to be small and lightweight, so that travellers could transport them without difficulty.

I popped out the trail maps and guides and made an inventory of highlights of the trail as we had see them and aspects of each section of trail that we've particularly like. I noted weather, season and time of day as factors that could be used to make pieces different or enhance atmosphere. I then did a quick survey of my photos and made notes of which ones I still need and which I have.

The next step is to print out a set of four pictures and play with them.

And go hiking. We have to get out on the trail again soon – I need more shots of Motion Head (near Petty Harbour).

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