In the spirit of being more open with my creative efforts (even / especially the messy process stuff), I offer my recent studio self check-in. This will be a lengthy read!
The pandemic has made everything harder, and it has made the good things feel less good. I spent most of March through August surviving and redirecting myself out of crushing depression as best I could. For the time, that needed to be enough.
Thankfully, by September I was ready to move beyond survival and back into the studio more consistently. Little did I know just how much foundational work I would accomplish. I end October in the midst of rewriting my self-narrative, personally and creatively.
When I was in graduate school for Interdisciplinary Arts at Goddard College, the close of each semester required a reflection on the program’s five degree criteria. We were to use the criteria as lenses through which to see and discuss our semester activity.
When considered with adequate understanding, the criteria helped foster creative work that was more thoughtful, engaging, and ethically aware. Of course, that didn’t make the process easy. Digging deep into your creative work can be a difficult task no matter what; anyone who’s tried to take seriously the task of writing an artist statement can attest.
But when I’m in “student mode,” I find I’m especially prone to looking so closely at new concepts that I go cross-eyed. This may be why near the end of my time with the Interdisciplinary Arts program I attempted to rework the criteria into the simplest language possible.
I’ve had these reworked criteria sitting around for some time, but I recently used them for a new round of reflection on my creative work. As before, it was a challenging but fruitful process. With this in mind, I thought I’d share what I made – along with a new sixth criterion for consideration.
One thing that helps inspire me in the studio is going back to my favorite media from childhood. I’m a big fan of the Legend of Zelda series and can’t remember how many times I read through the graphic novel adaptation of A Link to the Past by Shotaro Ishinomori when I was young. For years after its release by Nintendo Power, it was out of print. (It’s back as of 2015.) I still have my original copy, and I recently decided to choose some of my favorite pages to recreate digitally in Ishinomori’s original watercolor style.
Limited Art Print Series By Preorder Only • Due Dec. 6
Now that the series is complete, I’m making the 9 illustrations available for a limited time as archival art prints. Preorders are due December 6, with delivery scheduled just in time for the holidays. Order below or contact me for more details.
I’ll be kicking off my weekend with a comics and fantasy art opening reception in Lewiston. Come say hello!
Fri, Sep 27, 5-8PM Kimball Street Studios 191 Lisbon Street, Lewiston, ME More info
Infinite Canvas is a comics and fantasy illustration exhibit featuring primarily Maine artists. I organized and participated in the first one in 2017 and am back at it again this year! I had fun making the new logo, too.
For this year’s Artdogs Variations project, we chose to respond to the extensive bridge work taking place in our backyard of downtown Gardiner, Maine. My piece depicts a modern troll.
Find the artwork on the back of the Artdogs building (Arcade St public lot) and under the Bridge St / A1 Diner bridge.
INDOOR WORK + JULY 14 RECEPTION
Other current Artdogs work is inside the Circling the Square gallery (275 Water St, Gardiner). Join us for a reception and artist talk at the gallery on Sunday, July 14 at 5:00pm (refreshments provided).
As part of my connection with Gardiner arts group The Artdogs, I’m displaying a collection of new in-process illustrative pieces at the ground-floor gallery / print studio. Come check it out, and if you’re in the area for the July 15 reception and artist talk, stop by to say hello!
I’m prepping comics and prints for MeCAF, the Maine Comic Arts Festival! It’ll be one week from today on Saturday, June 2 from 10am-5pm at the Portland Public Library. Come by to say hello and grab my poetry comics collection or some new prints from the book!
New prints from my poetry comics collection, Haiku What I Can
Writing a good story can be a daunting task – it certainly has been for me! Where to start? How to proceed? What to do with all of the ideas that come to mind, or a surprising dearth of ideas despite feeling so excited about the project at first?
Over many months of ongoing development for a story of my own, I’ve had the opportunity to navigate the muck of these early questions. I’m now in the happy position to offer advice to those who might be feeling stuck themselves, or are just beginning to think about tackling a new story. Below, I’ll offer a simple yet effective tool for beginning the long journey of bringing your narrative project to life.