I love working with artists. It is our secret power as a collective, that most of us are artists or makers of some kind. And a common trait of artists is to embrace problems as puzzles to solve. Here's some examples:
Jakob (WiP Artist Leah's teenage son) is young, but an artist. He needed an apron in a hurry, so he cut up an old T-shirt and made one- complete with adjustable straps. It does the job.
Sandra Pazpascuzzi (artists/actor) had a muddy spot in her yard and mosaiced together a solution from her neighbour's discarded concrete basement. Plus a few bricks and stones for colour.
People are often stopped by not having the right materials or tools to do a job properly. But an artist approach is to make do with what you have on hand. In this case, I wanted to darn these cotton tights- no matching wool and no darning mushroom- but the ends of this acrylic yarn and an orange work fine, and make my heels very happy.
Another trait of artists - generousity. It may just be the ones I know, but the myth of the ego driven artist has not held up. Every artist we work with has looked for solutions, is willing to share. Graphic designer and facepainter extraordinaire Treya Beaulieu made our posters and pamphlets for the past couple of years. This year she didn't have the time to create a Spring poster for our swap, so I approached another artist, Lara Boadway, and she came up with the design on the left, playing off of Treya's "back to school" vibe on the right.
And finally, we just launched a YouTube channel and "Artist Approach" comes up a lot in our videos. For example, this video is a pretty good example of an artist approach to making things from other things... we weren't doing it for anything in particular, just though it might be useful to share. And fun.
Grateful for all these artists I get to play with.
--posted by Tanya Murdoch
art experiments turning waste into beauty