Kaleidoscope Expressions of Daily Creative Practice

My exploration of Digital Image Making class culminated with a final installation of my daily creative practice work. The charge was to carve out time each day, or almost each day, to dedicate to a creative practice, in whatever shape that took. As I spend my days in front of a computer, I was seeking to create analog work, perhaps with a digital component tying them all together at the end. As it turns out, that's exactly what happened - but a lot that happened in between too.

My love of textiles runs deep - combining fabric, paper, wire, found images and objects together and creating something new out of them is a blast for me. And so I focused my daily practice on creating small found object mixed media collages, all strung together in sequential order.

The intentionality of carving out this time was something that I both looked forward to and dreaded. I found this time - usually only about 10-15 minutes - to be extremely meditative and therapeutic for me, even though making that time was increasingly difficult as my life and responsibilities changed throughout the semester. Within just a few months I went from having a toddler to having a toddler plus being pregnant with his little brother; I went from not being in grad school to being in grad school; I traveled with family across the country and without my family half-way across the country for work as my first time away from my little guy; I went from doing my job to accepting a fantastic and challenging promotion. Let's just say - my already busy life started shape-shifting in ways often beyond my control.

These changes - these ebbs and flows, these challenges and joys - show up in my work. What began in my first few pieces as simply nice compositions, started telling a story - a visual journal - chronicling four months of my life at the end of 2014. A big year.

Here is an Instagram collection of my mixed media work under the hashtag #sjdailypractice. Each piece is titled and representative of the story being told through the piece. (Click to enlarge and see details.)


The culmination of this work landed in kaleidoscope format. I loved how the textures came through, how the collages were obscured yet still portray a certain energy, how the very nature of a kaleidoscope resembles patterns and repetition found in fabric design. I'd love to play more with this concept through subtle animations - twisting and changing form as a kaleidoscope does, or kaleidoscopes shifting and morphing into one another as the work progresses in time. All to be explored, all in good time.


And if you want to see all the kaleidoscopes together in one place, I made this little poster. (Click to enlarge.)



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