Currently exploring digital video making, and making a short video on the often fine line between loneliness and solitude. The call of solitude, of walking alone in the landscape, that deafens me when caught in domestic frustration, when every day chores have taken their toll. The search for silence so I can listen. Here are the words of Bill Viola on just that:
Landscape can exist as reflection on the inner walls of the mind, or as a projection of the inner state without. Flat open vast space lends itself to a clearer monitoring of the subjective inner world. Contemporary urban spaces talk to you, incessantly – signs call out, to try and grab you, programmed general consensus signals determine where and when you walk, the intersecting spheres of psychic perceptive space of others in too close proximity creates confusion and imbalance. The “stillness” of the sleeping apartment building of 150 families is not “stillness” at all. Removing all cues, from the outside, the voices of the inner state become louder, clearer.
“Reasons for Knocking at an Empty House.”
What a few weeks it has been since I last popped on and updated Bloomin Elle. I now have a shiny new MacBook which is a great investment for me in paying back into my creative making with a computer that works (for one!) and can allow me to make films, music, images and all sorts with ease. Granted, I have “learn to do these things” on my to do list still, but I am getting there!
I spent the weekend back in Pembrokeshire with my Ma last weekend and going “Home” has never been more poignant or potent. Returning with a different outlook on how I wanted to spend my time took me to some interesting, emotional and creative places. As a child and young adult I spent much time out in the fields, on beaches and by the sea (as I have mentioned in previous posts exploring this connection) and this time was no different. Being in the home my Dad built – with his writing still on the walls – memories of time there together are often hard to avoid in the solitude and space of sleepy Pembrokeshire. Completing my daily writing was challenging as emotions surfaced, but simply being with these emotions I found great strength and connection to a creative force that was ready to be unleashed. I spent time walking by the sea, and have documented this through sound recordings, and gathered a range of found objects that I am now beginning to play with as beginning sources. It would be nigh on impossible to document everything that came to mind, every idea and tangent found over those days, but I shall pop a little of the documentation here to, again, document the journey that this project is taking me on.
I am in the first of three weeks I have set aside to play with these ideas…. and I can already see that “Home” is baring much inspiring fruit and am excited about the whole host of avenues to be explored. You may be able to tell… Research, ideas and explorations are feeling a bit like a big ball of crazy coloured wool at the moment. The sifting process to draw out threads and focus I am eager to start soon. It certainly is quite something to sit with the cacophony of creative ideas and not run scared for not having any of the ends (to stick with the wool analogy) tied up yet.
Here is one experiment from found objects at home in Pembs. Making something new out of the every day. Baby Bell cases and jam jar lid… I enjoyed the process of looking at things around me with different eyes, the fact that the materials were free (bonus!) and the process of ‘cooking’ the wax and seeing what happened. The water bubbles in the final set wax (from the dripping bowl) I really liked. They offered little portals into the words underneath the wax. This jar lid happened to be the first that came to hand, and I found the words interesting and relevant. The idea that companies, brands, are focused on the “home made” culture/vibe/aesthetic/approach even when they are huge organisations with very little homely about them. We feel secure, safe when we are made to feel at home. We like to have things around us as a “reminder of home” and this psychology can often be manipulated. It made me think of the aisles and aisles of “home cooked” microwave meals for one, cottage pies, lasagnes, pies, that lie in supermarkets everywhere and how the mirror a losing of a sense of do it yourself community and slow living. A reality of the time being catered to as “convenience”, but for who, really?
So, back to the playing…
As the daffodils are springing up alongside the pathways of Bristol and the blue skies can be seen welcoming sun rays, the beginnings of a bigger and more exciting creative project are also blossoming.
I have spent many an hour contemplating the word, concept, physicality, emotionality and all round perspective of the word “Home” over the last few years, and this is where I find myself bringing my focus to as I bristle with longing for a creative project. So here I start! With 3 weeks to myself over Easter I cannot wait to be getting up every day to this exploration. Beginning with a week of research and exploring all around it (although, as I’m so eager to get start now this is already in flow and will be developing over the next 2 weeks before those 3 weeks even begins!), exploring different media and making processes and being inspired by others, asking others what “Home” means to them and generally taking a good old curious nose to everything that comes up! If, how and where I shall display the final works I do not know, but here I begin…
As I find myself procrastinating, yet again, toying between writing new poetry material, working on old, working on form or being inspired I find I have spent a few hours doing very little. Frustration rises, but then I realise I can start now. So I am off to spend an hour before bed reading poetry and making notes in my note book of fodder for emerging work.
I recently bought Rhian Edwards’ new publication of work Clueless Dogs. I am totally in love with her wry, heartfelt and delicious style. I wait in excited anticipation to see the lyrical Benajamin Zephaniah this Friday evening at Arnolfini and the hilarious Tim Key next week, as part of Bristol Poetry Festival. I have just found out that Rhian is part of a Welsh Women’s Poetry event at the end of next month at Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff. How exciting! I think this is a must. Working in isolation, with only myself to entertain and faff, finds a touch of wall bouncing at the moment. This needs to shift, and what better way than to spend time in the presence of those you find inspiring.
Here is on of Rhian’s excellent short poems, that encapsulates this evening.
I empty my room of last night.
I tread barefoot about the house,
open every window, telling
myself I’m airing the place.
I fill the kettle, forget
what for and wander away
to find myself in a mirror
looking for something to pluck.
So, my word, what a long time it has been since I have paused to reflect and blog. A lot of exciting things going on at the moment. Light Box is in the final 2 weeks of preparations for the launch of the 3 year project. The walls are painted, workshops planned, resources bought, outreach tasters in the process, flyers out… and a whole host of other things in between. I am feeling extremely grateful to have the job that I do!!
A couple of months ago I came across Pretty Nostalgic magazine at the great Magpie Market vintage fair in Bristol and have been devouring each article of the first and second editions ever since. With a great blend of all things British and vintage, a fun and relaxed writing style, beautiful images and interviews with interesting people involved in all manner of vintage lifestyle, it makes for the perfect partner for a cuppa. Thoroughly enjoying their reporting on medicinal herbs and foraging.
So here’s to day-to-day beauty and creativity. I feel another project coming on. It’s been too long since I had focus with what I’m doing.
Lots of beach plastic collected in Pembrokeshire is sitting in my studio ready for playing with and making pieces. Poetry books being read and writing explored. Ahh… hello creative self. How I’ve missed you.
At long last, after revisiting the beauty that is sitting down to reflect and blog, I have together a few photographs from the Easton Arts Trail display in my front room! Here you are:
Colour and light: inspiration.
The photographic documentation of 28 Days Notice.
Sweet nothings: playing with text and image.
Visitor’s playful contributions!
With Sympathy #1
With Sympathy #2
With Sympathy #3
Beach Plastic #2 – sold!
“I want all the demons of my subconscious to have full flower, to have the run of the house, because they are what it means to be human.”