Currently UW-Stout Student
Major in Studio art with a concentration in drawing.
Minor in psychology.
future art therapist.
Theme of work is striving to find purpose in a world full of efficiency. My more current work is looking at this theme with a specific interest in mental illness.
Running my fingers across the surface it feels cold smooth almost sterile. My surface was my desk and my landscape was a middle school classroom, the next few months the top of this surface of where I sat would become my space, my home, my control. As I sat in class sitting still was no option, I would shake, sweat, fidget, and bite my nails until I was bleeding. I had to keep my hands busy. I had to get control over something. This experience would impact me so greatly I would continue this investigation for the rest of my life. It seems like a simple solution, but I started to draw. Eyes would fall over me, I felt acceptance and even more then that special. I felt I had a gift not everyone had that people admired. What I was going through was a familiar feeling for any human being. We have a need to feel accepted and special, which in turn creates purpose for our being.
My work has always been processed based, experimenting with drawing that involved me being very physical in my work. I acted as a tool as I did a routine exercise on a large sheet of paper covered in powered charcoal. I investigated drawing exercises such as blind and double blind contours which allowed me to focus on the process of looking. I assigned drawing a blind contour of myself every night before bed as routine for a month. I tried the method of drawing automatically the process intrigued me due to its meditative like state. It seemed automatic drawing related to my experiences. When I first started drawing, I did not have a conscious plan when drawing but uncovered images. Throughout all my work I am achieving the feeling of control by attempting control over what we can’t control. My routine was my control when the mark making seemed out of my control. Just as in my automatic drawing, drawing became the control over the images I felt I could not control.
Through this experience I have uncovered the theme of purpose throughout my work. My drawings did not look purposeful, but the process of making them served a psychological purpose of achieving the feeling of control. Alfred Adler, a well-regarded psychologist believed a person’s personality is based on maintaining control over his/her life. Adler also believed in a single “drive”, this concept in which our motivating force is feeling the desire to fulfill our potentials to become closer to our ideals. Drawing has provided me with the sense of control over my life, when I may be lacking control. These drawings in turn create limits to what the viewers can access within the work, and does not always make my work accessible to impact the viewer the way the drawing had impacted me. Not wanting my work to feel meaningless I seek to impact lives in my career and will start with this body of work.
Uncovering this theme has allowed me to create topics within the broad meaning of “purpose”. I am currently examining my personal experience of the need of helping others in order to achieve my ideal self by striving to reach my full potential. Working with metal I seek to create wearable items, that when worn, help the wearer in some form. Looking at the interaction of the piece and how it effects the physical body, I will be researching pressure points and other physical processes people do in order to relieve stress or positively impact mental health diagnosis. Some pieces will involve restriction in order to stop the wearer from a negative action. While other pieces will provide a positive action for the wearer when his/her mind is in a more negative, or crisis-like state. My work delivers a helpful experience for the wearer and in turn gives me the response that I am getting closer in reaching my ideal self.