Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Self Exploration through Art

I know that title sounds deep but I am not referring to anything profound when I make that statement I just wanted an intriguing introduction before I went on to share what I recently discovered through my classes, projects and my creative voice.

For the past 2 weeks, we've been working on drapery which is even harder than it looks, yet it is a hypnotic experience when you get into the zone. I found myself eager to delve in, ready for the challenge but as the folds began to run in to each other I became confused and I stopped "feeling" the drawing. Always a problem solver, I decided to post stickys on each of the folds with a number so I could keep track of their flow into one another. When I finished, you could no longer see the fabric because the stickys where everywhere plus they left their own shadows which messed with my blending... ARGHHHHHH! The methodical logic that served me well writing term papers and managing business accounts was not the correct approach for this assignment. No- I had to become more invested in the fabric, the movement, the relationships between light and darkness scattered about. I had to SEE more. When I began to do this, I fell into a trance like state - it was most definitely meditative in nature. Time stood still, my hands and brain worked together to create something that my inner voice knew little about. It isn't a masterpiece by any means but guess what? I did something that I did not believe I could do and that is a priceless feeling.

My Graphic Design class has become challenging too. Last week we had to draw typeset with colored pencils in preselected fonts for a Olive Oil label we are mocking up. It is tracing right? Not as easy as it seems my friend. They expect the finished product to look like it was printed off of the computer. This taught me so much about using colored pencils in hard and soft lead. I never realized that handling these simple instruments would require so much practice.

This week we had to create 20 logo images based on 5 different concepts. This was also an incredible learning experience because we did some visual brainstorming which caused me to use that same part of my brain that I used when I did my drapery. It is a wonderful feeling to spend access my right brain for long, uninterrupted periods of time while simultaneously using my left brain to remain focused on my concept. Rarely do my right and left brain spend time together in this way. I was really pleased with my work - obviously, some are better than others, but I gave the assignment everything I had. Last night as I looked over the finished work I felt like a true artist for the first time.


  1. Jilliene, I'm so impressed! Those typesets are really amazing! Claudine Hellmuth said that she did very poorly on that in art school, I imagine it must be soooo hard and yours are GREAT!

    And of course I love all of your other logos since they are all about ITALY! :) I'm good at a lot of things but drawing is NOT one of them, I'm really impressed! :)

    I'm especially happy that you feel like an artist and have been able to tap into a different part of your brain or a different way to use parts of your brain. How rewarding! You wouldn't have found that if what you were doing weren't challenging. How wonderful!

  2. Hey Jilliene!
    Wow are your art classes ever different from my art classes but I guess yours is more toward the graphic design.
    You are doing a great job I am really proud of you. I plan on taking a photo of my 4 foot by 7 foot self portrait tomorrow or Saturday I'll post it on my blog it isn't finished yet but I thought a preview would be cool.
    I am super excited about my next project too I will post about that on my blog too.
    Keep up the awesome work I think you ROCK!
    Heather (runswithtrimmer)

  3. It is beautiful work Jill. You ARE an artist.