I haven't made art for art's sake in a very long time. I always have a reason to create something - and usually a deadline. Until Minted unveiled its newest challenge a few weeks ago: the art print challenge. One of the big reasons I've joined Minted (where you submit designs to be chosen by the community) is to dive into & test new work without a lot of strings attached. No pressure to produce or price or market, let alone store inventory to pack & ship. Minted announces challenges pretty regularly, so I can choose to submit or not, depending on my schedule & interest.
This new challenge called for art that we'd hang on our own walls, that we'd want ourselves. I had been toying with a couple ideas in my head & this was a good way to 1) get them out of my head & onto paper and 2) possibly like the process & result so much that I'd be motivated/reassured to keep at it.
While I had more ideas for submissions, I decided to stick with three that worked well together & that meant a lot to me. In order of appearance, we have: Sea Fever, You are my Rising Sunshine, and Little Prince.
Sea Fever is a poem by John Masefield and was read by my sister at my dad's memorial service last month. I wanted to display this poem in my home, but wanted to hang or frame more than just a print out of the words. Done in this way, I can choose to read the words on one day and choose to just see the beautiful ship on the next - depending on how close I want to be.
You are probably very familiar with the folk song You are my Sunshine. My mom sang it to us when we were little and today, it is almost synonymous with her memory. In my print, You are my Rising Sunshine, I had originally oriented this at the bottom of the canvas, and then realized that it looked like it was setting and that the sunshine had indeed been taken away. So I moved it to the center where it becomes more of a rising sun - a beginning to beauty, not an end.
And finally, my last piece, Little Prince - words taken from the beloved children's book of the same name & words that came from a friend & have helped me through loss. I experimented with a star shape & it felt too literal. So I tried a circle, which given a circle's nature of never ending, seemed like a better fit. And as someone who'd put this on a wall, I like that close-distant relationship similar to the one in Sea Fever. You can read the words, but because they go up-side-down at times, you are almost forced to just see a circle of pretty lettering.
So those are my three submissions for Minted's art print challenge. What do you think? The challenge is now open to voting, so if you like them, check them out here and scroll down to Linda & Harriett to see & vote.
Thanks for letting me share these pieces and their meanings here. I realize that they're a little heavier than most of the submissions on Minted, but I sort of can't help it. It's a little bit of where I am right now in processing my dad's passing and a little bit selfish, I guess, too - because I would (and will) be hanging these on my walls. And I know I've been out of the game for a while, but isn't art supposed to be personal?