Every year around this time I find a sense of relief from the hustle of holiday production and start to dream of more artistic endeavors. In the week after Christmas, I start to plan elaborate concepts that start to form my creative path for the upcoming year. I usually try to incorporate these ideas into my blog, because it helps to hold me accountable by giving me some guidelines and a schedule. Last year, I started two blog projects, Response Saturday and my Design Team, but unfortunately, I was not able to see either of those projects to completion. I ended one in May and one in July, which corresponded with the unexpected business success of my weekend Rust Belt Market shop. While I was sad to leave these projects, I didn't feel too bad about ending them, because it was clear that I couldn't continue and keep up with my changing business. That said, by the end of the year, I was really feeling the loss of the structured creativity that my blog provides. So I am eager to start a new project for this new year. I am still sort of clarifying my concept, but I will share it here soon!
I will tell you that the concept has a little bit to do with taking a journey of the imagination. This is not unlike the start of my New Year in 2010, when I started my Song Lore series, where my inspired word of the year was "journey". Back then, I was anticipating a year of actual travel: lots of shows, the Bead Cruise, plus the more conceptual journey of exploring music to form the inspiration for a year's worth of new work. This year's journey is less about actual travel and more about touring places of the imagination, both my own and the dreams and visions of others, to form the inspiration for new work. Each month, I intend to explore a new type of "place" and focus on that for the whole month. I plan to draw heavily on other artists, films, and music to paint a picture of these places here on the blog, not unlike a travelogue, and then create my own works in response. I am less inclined to limit myself to jewelry or beads at this point, in an unusual twist for me. The goal of the project the year is to really expand on my creative journey and be inspired to try new things that are way beyond the production that often weighs me down through the course of running my business. I want to get back to the Art in my life and letting my mind float away to far off places for inspiration seems to be a wonderful way to do this at this time.
Melanie is an artist, blogger, writer, and ceramic beadmaker at Earthenwood Studio. Her beads and components can be found at her Etsy shop and her jewelry can be found in her Etsy Galleria. To comment on this post, visit the original post at the Earthenwood Studio Chronicles Blog.