Sunday, March 30, 2008

Out of a Rut and Into Your Groove!

Are you stuck? Here is the first in a series of posts based on activities I tried out on a bunch of great sports, and terrific artists at the Western Colorado Center for the Arts yesterday.

Our first activity, very loosely inspired by Japanese Calligraphic paintings and the exciting works of Franz Kline, was string painting. We used black tempera and jute package twine, but you can also try black ink with yarn, string, or even rope.

1. Pour the paint or ink into a cup.
2. Dip the string into it.
3. Quiet your mind. Close your eyes. Loosen your shoulders and let tensions go.
4. Open your eyes. Pick up the string and draw it across the paper once, or several times.
5. Put the finished work aside and repeat on another piece of paper.
6. Let the works dry and keep them in a folder for a week or two.
7. Spread them out on a table and pretend someone else did them. What do they have in common?
8. Assume they are all expressing different aspects of the same thing. What is that thing and how does it relate to your work?