Sometimes you work on a piece, and you think you are all in your own head and using your own special visions and all that secret special stuff, and when it's all said and done, you look back and find out you are not oblivous to what's going on around you. In fact you are a freakin' sponge.
Yea, that's me.
I was working on a canvas this past week. I had already prepped the canvas with gesso, since I am recycling one of 100 used canvases I purchased recently. I had laid down coats of cobalt and green and let them all mingle and drip. I had already done 3 laser transfers, and I was ready to give this whole thing some life.
And then I got my David Hochbaum catalog in the mail. All these luscious pages of aqua blue, dripping with oceanic collages, ships, and mystery. I poured over the pages a few times, trying to get a better glimpse into the techniques and the meaning.
The next day, I went to work on the canvas that was awaiting me. I took a hard look at the piece, and it looked like water. My boyfriend also agreed, this was ocean!
My latest series of works is involving shape shifting, animals and humans morphing together. Continuing on in this fashion, for this canvas, with it's obvious oceanic tendencies, I did a mermaid. When it was all done, I couldn't help but drastically notice the influence that the catalog had over my work that day. It was sitting over on the table, and when I "came to" (the phrase I use to describe how I feel as I finish up a piece and rise out of it) all I could think of was the Hochbaum catalog I just got. As much as I try to make all things I do come from my own heart, I find over and over that my brain is part sponge, picking up details, colors, ideas, and influences from everything around me.
I mimic that process in my artwork. I pick up colors, papers, textures, and let them compose the piece.
Therefore, my brain is a collage, right?