Saturday, September 13, 2014

Taking It Apart & Putting It Together

"Water Lily" by Jim Carpenter, Watermedia Collage, 9.5" x 9.5" 

"Skiving is a direct act of revolt against the arid philosophies of living that we're indoctrinated with at school and at work, the notion of suffering now, pleasure later. Well, that way of thinking is anathema to your idler. He can't wait until tomorrow." - Tom Hodgkinson

I Was Skiving Today!

Today was my day to sit the gallery, a "job" that I commit to in order to be a member of the gallery. However, I also have this 30 day challenge to deal with and I was trying to figure out how I could meet the challenge while sitting the gallery.  Painting would be out of the question. Too wet and messy. For the last few months I've been toying with doing some collage while at the gallery, but with limited success. So today, as I headed out to Melrose, I packed a carryall with tons of torn up watercolor papers and acrylic starts, and adhesive. 

I spent the good part of 3 hours of my 4 hour shift making 3 or 4 pieces.  For me, the worst part of collage is that there are a bazillion possibilities for combining papers, while the best part of collage is that I get to make something totally out of some of my favorite original pieces of paint on paper. And let's not forget to mention the fun part of tearing up paper!  Talk about revolt and rebellion!  I decided that I would just go for it and stick these pieces down when I liked what I saw. Otherwise, I'd be dillydallying. 

I'm showing 3 of the collages to you today - I think this will catch me up so that I now am up to date with the challenge and have one to spare. I can't help but think that in a way I am cheating. While the rest of my colleagues are painting away, I'm tearing up paper and gluing it down. And though it is not cheating for those who do collage all the time, for they are experts and collage is their art form, for me, a painter, it seems like... oh well, skiving is what Tom Hodgkinson calls it. In that sense, I guess one man's work can be another man's skiving! 

"Lily Pod" by Jim Carpenter, Watercolor Collage, 4.5" x 6.25"

"The Prairie" by Jim Carpenter, Watermedia Collage, 6.5" x 4.5"

You know, if it weren't for the challenge, I'd probably still be looking at these pieces of paper - all totally unglued. I'm increasingly grateful for the challenge! How about you?


  1. I am grateful as well. And one reason is for the chance to see your wonderful work each day! These totally count as far as I am concerned. The act of creating! Water Lily is my favorite, but all of these are so graphic, and have a mood all their own. I am curious to see if you will do more of these this month :)

    1. And another reason for gratitude is the support we receive from our artist buddies! So, thank you, Sheila! I don't know if I will do more of these. It's a slightly different mindset to do them, but I think that I broke through something yesterday - a blockage that I had in doing them. Funny how writing about something and posting it on the internet for all the world to see can have an effect on you! Ha!