Studio Musings

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Inspiration from Other Artists

borrowed paper and borrowed pens thanks Jane & Leah!
My inspiration comes from many, many different places - nature, color, the man-made world, and yes, other artists.  Here, I thought I'd share the notes I took during last month's Bead Society meeting.

 Kendra's talk offered lots of food for thought - as the slides flashed by, my hands sought to capture a few of the lovely pebbles in the flowing stream of ideas.  I was especially taken by the pieces from Convergence II, (I think that's the right exhibit) where the theme was making a piece of jewelry for a literary or historic figure.  Beaded eye patch anyone?

Lately, I've been spending a lot of time deciding just exactly how I'm going to use the lovely enameled poppies that Lynn Bowland sent my way a while back, almost obsessed you could say.  In my notes, you can see poppies emerging from waves of green, adorning a vase, even used as the focal for a jaunty flapper hat like one I saw in the slide show.

Wouldn't that be fun; to make a beaded flapper hat?  I wonder how you'd stiffen it to keep its shape but still keep it light and airy?  What if I just made a hair ornament instead?  Sitting there in the darkened room, the ideas started to flow.

sketches made during David Chatt's class at Penland, 2008
And while they were sparked by the images before me, many of my sketches pulled from themes I've visited time and again.  Like the vase, which reminded me of the sketches I'd made for some beaded vessels with voids back in 2008 while at Penland.  Which were originally inspired by a burl wood, turned bowl I saw in an exhibit at the airport while traveling. I look at these sketches, and I can clearly see the burl wood in the textures, though I'd plan to reinterpret it with beads.

It all circles around.

But the true gem from my notes above was a personal epiphany.  Simply the phrase "Personal area of patience".  People will look at my work and say, "I'd never have the patience".  And maybe they're right - I look at cross stitch and think the same.  I may admire cross stitch, but I could never make myself sit down and complete a project.  Because that's not where my personal area of patience lays.  My zen-place and my challenge place is in stitching together little beads into abstract paintings, which may masquerade as jewelry or sculpture depending upon the day.

So there's a bit of a rambling post, and a glimpse into my 'creative well', as Julia Cameron might say - from whence I draw my inspirations.


  1. Hi Karen,
    I enjoy reading about an indiviual's creative process, everyone is different, but seem to share one or another thing in common.

  2. Your "personal area of patience" sounds so much better than my usual response to the same comments -- "We all have our own form of crazy". Me, I'd rather do almost anything besides hemming a skirt or pair of pants!

  3. Thanks for giving us a peek at your sketchbooks! Other people's creative processes fascinate me.

    Area of personal patience... what a great way to put it! I could bead for hours, but I don't think I could do traditional quilting the way Mr. Sequin's mom does. So precise! It'd drive me nuts. ;)

  4. Personal area of patience/own form of crazy - both work. :)

    I just like 'personal area of patience; because it does seem to me that almost everyone has infinite patience for _something_. That something just varies wildly from person to person.

    And I'm right with you Sarah! I admire traditional quilting enormously, but it would drive me absolutely crazy! An art form where a sixteenth of an inch counts. Yikes! Freeform beading is far more forgiving.