Thursday, June 11, 2015

Being at Anderson Ranch - Setting Up Creative Challenges for Myself

After the whirlwind of the fun of Friday at Bella Frida, the family spent Saturday continuing to empty our Grandpa Don's house. Sometimes it feels like the stuff repopulates while we are not there. It was important for me to be part of that process. Much of the stuff made its way into our big room. It also meant that I cleaned out half of my closet in preparation for switching out chest of drawers. It was a good thing to get accomplished. I think that Good Will will be happy for that, too. All of that moving, packing and cleaning meant that the time I spent getting ready to come to Anderson Ranch art center was compressed. I felt hurried, a bit harried and incomplete when I left home for the four and a half hour drive to Snowmass. However, once I arrived, I had time to get set up in the dorm room and eat a leisurely, social dinner with the people who are in the class with me. Being at the Ranch is such a treat and a gift.

I am taking Encaustics with Mia again. She is the same Mia that owns Two Hands Paperie. When I took the class last year I had pneumonia, so while I love what I created, I recognize that it was not all that creative. This time I am aiming to create pieces that are much more altered and artsy.
I bought two long, thin canvases with a specific kind of landscape image in mind. I struggle to make the images that I have fit into that idea, but it was just not coming together at all. I finally recognized that I shifted gears to making images that are sort of portraits of Ethan and Ellie. It is something I have done for the last three years and those compositions are coming along nicely.

I've also gotten into a groove with the landscape images. I feel like I could develop an entire series around that style, and I might just do that. I am also doing a piece or two that is just pure fun.

The meals are amazing, just as I expected. That is certainly part of the magic of being here. I think it would feel pretty different if we were eating microwaved chicken nuggets and oven fries.

Tuesday night I attended the visiting artist lecture and found Cig Harvey's talk about her photography really inspiring. The most important thing she said when something like, "I make myself do art, take photographs, even when I am not in the mood to make art. And later, when I look at that photograph, I never find myself saying, 'oh, I wished I had watched T.V. instead of making art.'"

I also really like and enjoy all of the people in the class.

There is so much more to tell you, but I want to maximize my time here, especially since it is the last full day of being able to have access to all of the tools and equipment as much of Friday involves going to the silent auction and packing everything up. Some of the people in my class will ship all of their creations home via UPS.

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