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Today’s prompt: to show you how I make the things. But what do I show- the bridal bouquet floral preservation process- mixing and pouring resin- ink and watercolor? My head is spinning with all the options and I’m suddenly remembering why most artists stop when they’ve gotten good at one thing. For my sake, and probably mostly for your sake, I’m just going to talk about my creative process. (If you’re curious you can see drawing and digital painting, and resin process in my saved stories on my Instagram profile.)

Sometimes I have vague inspiration from music, poetry, a book, my day, etc.

Sometimes I have a direct commission request that I need to fulfill. For example- true story- “Hey, can you draw an exploded view of what our pizzas would look like if each of the ingredients were separated out- our customers don’t understand that the cheese touches the crust and the sauce is on top for this style.”

Sometimes I’m just sitting at my desk with my sketchbook and a feeling or a pang in my heart of something I need to work out.

Responsive art is a tool I use as an artist and art therapist. The meaning is in the name- I’m using art to respond to something: other art, a feeling, a person, the work I’m doing with a client. I’m not necessarily concerned about making something perfect or pretty in this. It’s about using art to have a conversation with that ‘thing.’ I might try to paint the mood I felt when I stared at a Rothko for hours, or scribble the rage I felt watching the last episode of LOST, or maybe I’m using watercolors to sit with my grief about that one client that died too soon. Maybe I pull a piece of that client’s artwork and draw my experience of holding space for it- and for her - one last time.

This is the creative process in which the “real” work is done. The gut-wrenching and terrifying growth, acceptance, and forgiveness emerges here. I create these pieces in my sketchbook, close the cover, and only venture back to it when I’m ready to feel intensely. This is my “real” art. My sketchbook is private- like my diary. So, for today, you get an image of a blank page of my sketchbook.


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