What happens for me each time I go to these retreats is that an idea evolves and blossoms. A round shape turns into a salmon egg, which turns into a series of the life cycle of the salmon. A painting of myself under a night sky turns into a series about the decades of a woman's life looking into a night sky--what she sees in the stars and clouds above her.
This time I went in with an idea of painting about the difficulty of girls receiving an education around the world. I had been focusing on women's issues for some time. I had a folder of photos with me that I'd taken of my 7-year-old granddaughter's hands and upper body this summer. The idea of girls reaching for books was my original idea. So my first painting done in the workshop began there.
|Reaching for an Education|
15 " x 22"
22" x 30"
Now that I'm home, the holidays have gotten in the way of my studio time, but I have completed the second piece of this series. This has involved some experimenting. As you can see, this child has braided hair, which is actually braided paper that I collaged onto the child's head. I also ended up cutting through the paper to make the braids more realistic. (This would only work with 300 lb. paper.) This piece has been narrowed down to the fabric of one country, Niger, one hand and one symbol. Can you guess how this series will progress?
|Teach Me: Niger|
30" x 11"