A huge thank you to all of you who supported my work this year, by buying my artwork, books and zines, or by chatting with me here about what I’m making and giving me encouragement. I get a lot from you all, and it spurs me on to do more with my creative life, knowing that my experiments have somewhere to go and will be enjoyed by you lot once they leave my studio.
This year I sold a total of 120 original paintings for Christmas, which was a LOT of painting, I tell you! And more than last year when I sold 70 and thought that was a lot! But they were happy hours with a paintbrush for me, and many of them were spent at my studio at the Abbotsford Convent, which puts joy in my soul.
I like to head there as soon as I wake, to harness my best creative time which is early morning. If I wake at 5.30am, I can fall out of bed, ride along the river, admiring the silhouette of Melbourne’s city as she dawns, and walk in the door by 6am. Then I work solidly on a creative project, uninterrupted, for several hours, before I pause for breakfast and to catch my breath. It’s a good life, I tell you.
Here’s a little video of my process over a few such mornings, creating my Licorice Allsorts series:
It’s made even better by having Mi help me out with the admin side of my business, handling all things technical and internet on my behalf. Did I tell you one of the things I’m proud of doing this year is writing a computer program that would make it easy for Mi and me to share the work? When I create an artwork, I enter it into the program, writing about what it means, why I made it, etc, while the inspiration is still whirling round inside me. When it’s complete, I add in photos, the dimensions and materials.
Then I can schedule what I’d like Mi to do and when: list it in my online shop and post my ramblings on Facebook, instagram, pinterest or blog so you lot can get an insight into what this piece is all about. Working this way is so much better than how I used to do it, which was very haphazard, and involved a lot of checking as I tried to remember whether I’d talked about a certain piece on my blog before or not.
Everything you read is my writing, but Mi takes care of getting it from my program to cyberspace. It’s good and frees up a lot of headspace for me to dream up new ideas.
And I’ve been dreaming a lot, which for me is the very essence of ‘muchness’. Here’s some of my ideas for next year:
- I’d like to make a series of artworks that reflect my experience as a Deaf person. I’ve got a couple of exhibitions booked in and at least one of them will be on this theme.
- I also want to think about travel. Not just travelling on a trip, but travelling through the journey of life. I’ve got lots of ideas for rather whimsical depictions of this, involving rubber stamp characters and vehicles and cityscapes and more.
- And I want to play around with abstracts, developing some of the ideas I’ve been experimenting with lately involving colours and shapes and patterns.
- There’s another book I want to write too, something about being successful on your own terms and making your life what you really want it to be.
Where exactly all this will go, I can’t say. I’m sure I’ll pick up heaps more inspiration as 2016 unfolds. But for now, I’m really happy to have made heaps of space on my studio walls for my new pieces. Thank you for your part in hoovering up the messes I made in 2015!
Right now, I’m gonna take a break. A big cyberbreak. I think it’s so healthy to get offline for a while and focus on the real, tangible world, here and now. Front up for your own life. No email, no facebook, no blog, though I’ll probably check my messages now and then, and if you buy something from my online shop, Paula will ship it to you. I’m setting up my Auslan lessons to auto-post (or rather, Mi is doing that for me, bless her), so if you are following them, they’ll still turn up on Mondays as usual.
Other than that, I’m outta here! See you mid-February, I reckon, when I’ll share where my cyber-free inspiration took me. Have a gorgeous holiday season, everyone, happy new year, and I look forward to sharing our lives again in 2016.