colouring books are not my thing at all, but i was so charmed by the artwork on this book i had to pick it up. i found it in a charity shop, hence the disgusting colours someone used to colour the hat. i was instantly reminded of mia ikumi, strawberry shortcake (character), sylvanian families, cabbage patch kids, and other whimsical things from my childhood.
i had such a wonderful time flicking through this book, and when i got home i researched sarah kay. the original illustrations dont have such bold lines at all, but are far more delicate with detail and watercolours! it also turns out 'sarah kay' is sort of a brand for this group of illustrations and is also the illustrator vivian kubbos' allias. this is only a slice of her creativity. it also seems she illustrated some of the pony pals books...
this sort of style and design is very influential to me right now. i decided to write an entry about her in planet venus.
in early december, my good friend d recommended me this book. i decided to pick it up as at this time, i was thinking a lot about my creativity and how the things in my life have affected it. id recently had a life change that drastically affected my free-time and how i could create; a couple weeks before i had gone through all the artwork i had ever made and chronologicalised it watching the creative spirit of my child self get crushed by school, the internet, and adult life. in many ways, the artists way arrived to me just in time to help me organise my thoughts around this and the realisations i was making, and how to cope with resurfaced dreams and disappointments. at any other time, i think the word 'spiritual' wouldve turned me off completely but due to the circumstances i just described i decided to get it.
its split into twelve chapters, and you read one every week. the chapters have a collection of interesting short essays on different topics, and a list of often very reflective tasks to complete, as well as daily 'morning pages' and a weekly 'artists date'. i did find it very enjoyable and its a nice art focussed twist on things like goal setting, morning pages/journalling, accountability, affirmations, minimising bad habits and thoughts, dealing with traumas, etc which im into in general and have been important things to me for my adult life. the first couple weeks focus on uncovering what might 'block' someone as an artist, and the ways that blocked artist might want to express themselves, and i was surprised by what came up.
i found i had to approach a lot of the spiritual talk with an open mind and interpret it in my own way, as i dont believe in god or 'the universe' or that there is a higher energy or something. i find creativity very mysterious and a wonderful thing about humans, but i feel its something that a single person can control for themselves and its not an external force.
something i really liked is how cameron acknowledges that going reflective work like this is very circular, and involves revisiting the same areas again and again. sometimes you feel as though you progress, but sometimes things seem like they move backwards or are stagnent, before you come back around again and big leaps have happened. i appreciated this reminder a lot. a lot of life is very circular.
i think itd recommend it to anyone who feels like their creativity is suffering, or feels weak, in some way. its been quite important in keeping my confidence up in a project which involves a lot of writing afloat, as this was something i found was crushed in my early teens by teachers...
this week i had the pleasure of seeing my favourite creative duo jamie hewlett and damon albarn in london talk breifly about gorillaz. ive seen damon perform many times but i was excited to hear him just talk instead, and i was ecstatic about seeing jamie in person too. i think they both always have such interesting things to say about the creation of art. i enjoyed it very much, but having alan carr as their interviewer was a very strange and tonally-off choice.
jamie said his favourite song was oil feat. stevie nicks which i had been personally very excited to hear. he was very right, it is such an incredible song. i think the titular track is still one of the best too.
i also had some time to visit the whitechapel gallery. here is some wonderful artwork.
delaine and damian le bas - the house of le bas, 'soul bag'
zadie xa - house gods, animal guides. and five ways 2 forgiveness
notes from 'escape the slick'
action, gesture, paint - women artists and global abstraction 40s-70s
lifang - autumn, 1968
margaret mellis - plant, 1960
i loved this. lesbians....read this now