Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Two faced

I went to art college two years after my daughter (my second and last child) was born. I did it because I wanted to bring my children up but being at home seven days a week was starting to make me a bit mad.

I was writing up until the time I went to art college. Mostly I was writing angst ridden stuff that will never see the light of day in any form other than an emotion for my fictional characters. But I was also trying (unsuccessfully) to write ‘how to’ articles for craft magazines. I hadn’t heard of perseverance in those days and my (non digital) photography skills were pitiful. However, it was pre-art college that through a friend, I wrote and recorded six or so talks for BBC Radio 2’s Pause for Thought.

Then I forgot the writing and went off to art college. It took two days a week, for two years, to do a part time foundation course in Art and Design. How I loved Mondays. When everyone else I knew was bemoaning the end of the weekend, I was cheering: Monday and Tuesday were my days in college. Towards the end of my foundation course, I knew I had to do another course and so when Daughter was one term away from starting school, I enrolled for a full time degree in Fine Art at the same university.

I knew, by the time this course started, that I was a maker (not a painter and I don’t like the term sculptor) and the more I made the less I felt the need to write. Except that I was writing essays – there’s always an element of theory – but I didn’t think about that as writing. So I thought that I needed one or the other: writing or making.

I’m not sure that’s true any more. Making takes you to that place where your subconscious does magic stuff all on its own for the benefit of your writing. And see, I’m still desperate to make…

Meet my two new friends; they’re helping with the hat making.

7 comments:

Queenie said...

JJ, milliner to the stars - ooh yes, that has quite a ring to it! I'm such a writer, though: my first thought on seeing your new friends was 'what are their names?'

SueG said...

Great heads and a great thought. I, too, have felt that way, but for me it's always been writing or music. I once thought that I had to make a choice -- either write or play my violin. The choice was easy in that I thought I'd never be good enough to be a professional violinist, but even so,I now know they are both so much a part of me I couldn't cut one out if I tried. For me, the 2 serves different purposes but come from the same place. Your blog also now shows me an additional facet of your friendship with not-only-in-Thailand Carol. How terrific for you both!

Flowerpot said...

Wonderful heads there - it's amazing what the subconscious is responsible for isn't it?

Debs said...

You're so creative, JJ.

The only creative thing I do is write, though it would be lovely to have something that I could make, but I've no idea what.

JJ Beattie said...

Queenie, Daughter did name them. I can't remember what she called the one with the face, but the one without the face was Bob!

Sue, I guess that's it. I don't need to make a decision that it's one or the other.

Flowerpot, it is. I love it when it does something magic.

Debs, thank you. I do love to make. Do you knit? Or sew?

Carol said...

Love em!!

You talented lady you :-)

C x

HelenMHunt said...

They are lovely!