Dear heaven, another post, with only words, and no pictures. I may climb the walls, or tear my thinning hair from my head entirely, from wanting to SHARE PICTURES!
Someone asked, a few weeks ago on Facebook, how people who created pieces for Bead Dreams did it. Was it component driven? And now, that question arises again, as hundreds of artists worldwide prepare work for "Battle of the Beadsmith".
I thought the question was a very good one, and I said so. I have been thinking about it ever since. For me, design IS a component driven process in some respects. I usually start my work by creating components and then I arrange and assemble them. But I don't think the right question is "how", when it comes to taking on a leviathan project for competition. I think it is "why?"
Probably every artist has their own answer, but I think it is my WHY that gets me through to the end of the process, and provides whatever success I achieve. And usually my why is three-pronged.
FIRST, something moves me. Something takes my breath away, or makes my knees weak, or actually brings tears to my eyes! And I want to express, or maybe re-create, that amazing thing in beads. It is this inspiration that makes all my decisions for me. What colors to use, what shapes I need, what textures, which beads, which stitches; everything comes back to the inspiration. I think beautiful jewelry can be made by arranging components, but I need more. I need a purpose, and a goal. My target changes and develops as I go, but it is essential that I have one, and that it be one with emotional meaning to me.
And SECOND, and even more important, I want to see if I can do it, or to figure out how to do it. There is a quote attributed to Picasso, although I understand that Vincent Van Gogh wrote this sentiment in a letter to a friend when Picasso would have been 4 years old. I think it is maybe a truism of all creative endeavor.
"I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it."
Usually, what I imagine as my end result is something I have not done or seen before, so there is no path to follow. There is not even a guarantee that I can find a means to my end. And sometimes, the backing up, reconfiguration, and the eureka of "that is what I should have done!", stops the process entirely. It's hard to do on a schedule, and to a deadline. And once you figure out how to make it happen, some motivational thing deflates. A knitter friend of mine says, once she has figured out how to make what she imagined, it gets harder to keep going. I agree. After all that exploration and excitement of "how will I do this" is resolved, the rest is just work.
So I need the THIRD part of the why; a desire and a means to share the work. I love to share the inspiration, and the process, and the final product. It is why I write this blog. And LORDY, LORDY... that desire-to-share thing that gets me through the end of the creative process makes waiting to share REALLY hard for me. I go completely insane waiting to share my Bead Dreams and Battle of the Beadsmith work. Does anyone else feel that way?????
How do you create your competition work? And why?