I was trying on my linen dress, pinning it up to alter it because it didn’t fit quite right, and threw it onto my linen bed. I laughed because if I could cover my world in linen I would. The lighting was gorgeous because it had just stormed.
And just that morning I had been pondering how an artist could, rather than just depicting the objects in one’s environment as an expression of themselves (like an artist drawing their dinner or their garden), one could take the art around them, the meaningful art made by the hands of those who loved them, and re-enter it into one’s art, giving that art double-duty so to speak: art within art. Not a new thought, for sure, but my thought.
I went into one of my photographic rampages. Yes, we all have these rampages, and they are good to keep our images fresh and to keep them rolling in for our artwork. Well, what a supply of imagery came rolling in!
The artwork I chose was by my sister Cheri, who died two years ago. For me she had made this precious little angel from a broken frozen charlotte with a stone for wings. The stone was drilled, and a simple white, waxed linen string was criss-crossed over the charlotte’s chest. Speaking of doing double-duty, she made this angel for me when my baby died 14 years ago, and now she has died, and so the angel speaks in doubles.
They each got a photo session, the dress I covered in a sprinkling of maple tree helicopters, which I had preserved this year, as I had planned on drawing them as much as I could. But now, scattering them all over the linen-on-linen bed, I was reminded of the scene in the Little Women movie, where Beth’s bed is covered in rose petals.
Finally, I drew the helicopters and winged charlotte on tracing paper with white ink. These will be layered in the Art Journal, Linen Bedroom, that is emerging.
I just wanted you to see how a simple hunting with the eyes and gathering of significant objects in your environment can really drum up personal imagery just by laying them out for yourself with intention. It will come together for you as well. You just start where you are. Take a breath, and begin.