Janice's Blog

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Get in touch with your Creative Side and be amazed!

janice lindsay collage workshop blog
Collage workshop: Aida Gonzalez Fry’s work in progress.
There is not a soul on earth who does not have a creative streak running through them and a child-like joy that gets released when allowed to mess with paint and paper, exploring the world of colour and shape...or so I thought. That is why my friend Lorraine and I decided to bring New York artist David Hornung to Toronto for a colour and collage workshop. And this wasn’t the first time. David is a professor of colour courses whose book, Colour: A Workshop for Artists and Designers, was so inspirational that last year Lorraine and I got him to come here and teach us colour mixing.
david hornung collage workshop in toronto with janice lindsay
David Hornung showing us colour mixing.
Like the time before, we rounded up nine others who were willing to book off an entire week and we settled in to Lorraine’s wonderful studio.
janice lindsay collage workshop blog
Lorraine’s normally tidy studio by day two. Just being there makes you feel like an artist.
And then it happened. I realized I was dreadful at collage! It was not just that I was positioned at a table between two brilliant collage artists – my friend Aida Gonzalez Fry, a painter and colour designer from Florida and my daughter Caroline – always an inspiration.
janice lindsay collage workshop blog
Me with my daughter, Caroline Macfarlane of The Good Bike fame.
As Aida and Caroline magically produced one wonderful piece after another, as if born collaging, I struggled and pushed and forced paper and paint into submission in the most unsatisfying way. And so it continued: day one…day two… I was resigning myself to the knowledge that we can’t all be good at everything. I might think I am brilliant at selecting the best colours for a client’s home but that doesn’t mean I don’t “suck” at collage.
janice lindsay collage workshop blog
The work starting to come together. The two top works are by Sharyn Adler Gitalis, a friend, colour and lighting designer, and artist in her own right.
Day three something started to click for me. I started getting into a groove. Things seemed to come together almost by themselves. It was great! Almost effortless and so satisfying. Suddenly I was making pieces that even looked wall-worthy. Collage was amazing!!! I had begun.
janice lindsay collage workshop blog
Sharyn, Helene Vinet, old friend and artist Barbara Todd at her computer, and quilt artist Joyce Seagram.
So this is what I learned: To accomplish something new, or something that does not come easily, we have to allow ourselves time. If you are successful from the get-go, challenge yourself to go to the next level, the place where you are tempted to give up and to say you can’t do it. We may not have the mythic 10,000 hours to truly become accomplished, but I am convinced that if we can be in a place without the phone beeping, the internet tempting, and life interrupting, we can all accomplish great things.
janice lindsay collage workshop blog
The group critique. Barbara, Marilyn, Patsy, Joyce (seated), Roz Kavander and Lorraine. Most sporting the aprons cut from a roll of plastic sheeting.
It is harder to do it alone. David Hornung was a fabulous guide and guru. But he wasn’t joking when he said we should all come back together for another week without him. There was such a power to the collective energy in the space. It is a total pleasure to be single-mindedly focused in a room full of people with a similar intent. I speculate it would be like running a marathon or just getting through an exercise class, we do better in a group. We don’t give up. We go just a little further, try just a little harder…and we have more fun.
janice lindsay collage workshop blog
Roz Kavander, my friend and my travel buddy when I go to CMG colour conferences.
And, in case I ever doubted it, I am convinced we are all creative. We just need to make the time and find the place where we can let it come out. If we can’t find that, then we have to invent it for ourselves.
janice lindsay collage workshop blog
Caroline’s works in progress.
The best things happen when, one way or another, you just do it!

If you are an artist, designer or latent creative type and want to be contacted in the spring of 2013 about the next workshop then let me know. Hornung’s book will be re-released this fall and is a must have for anyone who is serious about colour.


Post a Comment