At the beginning of this year, my creative practice has changed from oil painting to printmaking and book art. I am a former painter who found God. My previous work were dark where I would paint ghosts or the fantasy of an abused child who wish she could cut off her abuser’s hands and penis.
Now, after much healing through my faith, through forgiveness and through art, I learned that art reflects what is inside the artist. Art helps us to heal by sharing our thoughts and letting it “out”.
When we keep all the pain, un-forgiveness and/or shame inside, we inject the poison into our veins. It then slowly seeps through our body. This darkness then turns into cancer or some other disease.
Today, when a bad childhood memory creeps up, I would visualize myself binding that incident, wrapping it up and tossing it into a fire. I would then say good words over myself; such as, mercy, grace, beauty, love, joy, and peace.
I use this same practice in creating art. I would first meditate on something good and fun. My work is more of encouraging, fun or cheerful themes. It might not be powerful visually, but I believe it brings joy to a person’s heart.
Today, the theme is “Over the Hill”. I recently turned 45 years old and thought what “Over the Hill” meant. It would be fun to create a small book using letterpress, so I went to the Center for the Book in San Francisco and rented the press machine. (Below are photos of my creative practice.)
1. Laying out the concept.
2. Running it through the press machine.
3. Because everything has to be done backwards, I made a mistake.
I printed “bab” instead of “bad”.
4. This is what I love about mistakes; I tried to come up with a creative way to fix it without have to spend another 6 hours recreating the layout. I turned “bab” into “bad.attitude.b@!ch!” I thought it was funny. Unexpected. CUT OUT THE B.A.B!
5. Final product of a small folded book made out of one page with only a slit in the middle.
I have discovered recently that my creative practice doesn’t have to be perfect. I can always take my mistakes and make the final product better -but with an unexpected surprise.