That’s often the next question after being asked what I do. I’m often reduced to being mumbling and vague at this point. Frustrated that I can’t get something I feel passionately about across.
I think the reason for this has several layers. One is that often social chat is pretty shallow, people are looking for bite sized easily digestible sound bites so that you can be easily categorised and compared. ‘I do water colours of pet dogs’, ‘I make stained glass panels’ can be easily referenced and the conversation can continue ‘ah yes, my auntie Joan did that in an evening class …’
My art is always changing, as I change. I’m a materials magpie and love to try things I’ve never done before. Mosaic, drawing, digital art, murals, stained glass, sculpture, tons of journals, decoupage, sewn images, photography, poetry, paint, collage, assemblage… See what I mean?! I would definitely have lost the attention in any normal chat. I tend to go for ‘mixed media’ but that doesn’t really tell you much. The above image is a few of my creations I have done this month.
The other reason I’m a bit awkward in social gatherings trying to describe my artwork is because it’s about the deeper meaning. Art as a healing tool to reveal yourself to dialogue with your soul.
At this point my companion would probably mutter something about getting a drink and disappear!
It’s not always easy to find the words for things that are complex and changing, but I still think it’s worth it. There are always curious people who will be willing to listen and embrace the complexity and feel relief when you can help them embrace their own. In a speedy world of shallow sound bites there is a hunger for a deeper, richer and infinitely more beautiful inner life expressed through art.
Thank you for listening.