Thursday, April 22, 2021

How many unfinished projects do you have?

Unfinished artist's books. Titled "Heaven, Hell My Sketchbook" and "Egypt" by Judith Hoffman

A friend is doing some kind of finishing projects challenge. She has talked about it several times and we decided to each bring an unfinished project to our next zoom meeting. I have been cleaning so I put the ones I could easily find on my work table, side by side. There are at least these 6, and possibly many more, depending on how you count. Some must be at least 15 years old. I have one somewhere that goes back to the late 80's, luckily I'm not sure where it is. I started taking photos of some, thinking maybe a different view would help me decide. Or I might even decide to toss it. It can be healthy to let go of that old stuff, right?

The two above are still interesting to me. They pose painting problems. I'm not really a painter so I have doubts and tend to fumble around as I work, but I am happy with most of my progress so far. 

"Heaven, Hell, my Sketchbook" A favorite pair of pages.

Just after I wrote the last paragraph I listened to a Learning to Paint podcast with Jane Davies as the interviewee. She says she never forces herself to finish something. She feels it will look forced. I am thinking about that - is it worth the anguish? Using the word "anguish" doesn't make it seem desirable. Maybe I have gotten enough out of those projects already. I did learn stuff,  it was probably a step forward in some way. By the way, I highly recommend that podcast. The one with Jane Davies is very good. Many of the others are interesting.

Egypt an unfinished artist's book by Judith Hoffman. I like the folding lawn chair. I just might be seeing a red theme here.
A group of handmade journals I haven't worked in.

This group is journals, intended to be for fooling around, not finished art. Two are made from scrap papers, some pages were the paper on my table that I wiped brushes on, or scribbled on to get things going. One has small amounts of paint or collage to break up the white. One is blank. So they do present a different aspect. I don't have to finish every page, I can skip around and just play. They are intended for fun and experimentation. But I made them around three years ago and haven't worked in them since. Should I push myself a little?

These mostly white pages would be easy to draw in.

Some interiors are old scrap papers used for testing paint or to cover my work area. They will be harder to work with. This is the only page I have done anything with. 

I also have at least 10 stacks of prepared pages, intended to be books. Some have been eco-dyed, some are painted, some have a little collage on them. Or all of the above. I have some cut out collage material and one finished page for a book. And several models for a pop-up book that isn't right. I'm sure there is more, but I don't want to look deeper. I did end up throwing one project away - it's so old and different from how I work now I can't possibly start it up again. And it did feel good.

Do you have many unfinished projects? What is your relationship with them? Do you still love them and want to get back to them? Or are you hiding them in the closet, hoping they will fall through a hole in the floor?

It's spring here and very beautiful. As always, stay as well as you can, be as happy as you can.