It's hard not to look back as you hit mid-November, the realization slowly dawning that soon, head shaking in disbelief, you will be trying to get used to the idea of living in 2011. What could have happened, where did the time go? I know I spend my days mostly a bit dizzy from trying to get a grip on the multiplicity of lines that connect across the globe as I meet new artists and kindred spirits, then meet up with them again a few moments later on another site in another context. It's like we are all at some sort of progressive dinner, being introduced and reintroduced under each new roof, finally realizing, not only that we have indeed met, but with so many shared interests and ideas, surely we must have known each for decades already. This little dance happened several days ago for me with Bridgette Guerzon Mills, a mixed media/encaustic artist that I bumped into online repeatedly over such a short period of time, it was like a persistent knock at the door. Once I started making the connections, I knew I must ask Bridgette to be part of the Fleeting Moment, Backward Glance feature for The Walk In the Universe. And here she is!
|What Lies Within, mixed media|
Fleeting Moment: Backward Glance
The theme that Patti has chosen for this month aptly captures what motivates me to create. Life is composed of fleeting moments. You blink, and then its gone. Time and memory intertwine, weaving their dance, leaving me in their wake.
When I was a little girl, I used to find myself in moments that I never wanted to forget. Not that these moments were even that eventful, yet I didn’t want to lose them. I wanted to hold onto that moment of being 12 years old and running through a field of uncut grass. Hearing the breath within my chest expand, the laughter of my sisters around me. The smell of the sun and the dirt filling my nostrils. The burn in my muscles as I ran through the tall grass and leaped over fallen branches. I would close my eyes and let my senses free and memorize it all so that I could always return.
|The Sky Was Full of Song, mixed media|
Memory is unreliable. Details blur, nuances get lost, and imagination and motive fill in the blanks. And so I write. I quiet down, let myself be still, and open up my senses. Let each one tell me their story. So that when I return and read the words, I remember.
|P.S., encaustic and mixed media|
My journal writing and my art allow me now to hold onto the fleeting moments. I have kept a journal since I was a young girl and it really has become a habit that I cannot break. If I don’t write it down I fear that I will lose the moment. My journal entries also include collage and paint at times, allowing me to tap into feelings that sometimes cannot be expressed through words.
|February 4, 2008, visual journal entry|
My mixed media paintings incorporate moments captured by my original photographs with the richness of paint, creating a bridge between two worlds - the real and the reconstructed. I lay down layers of paint and pieces of photo transfers, papers or fibers to create depth in both form and meaning.
|Lesson Plans, encaustic and mixed media|
Everything I create is an aspect of myself, a composite of the fleeting moments that make up my existence thus far on this earth. Once recorded in words or with paint, the moment stays with me, allowing both the inward and the backward glance.
“The true art of memory is the art of attention.” ~Samuel Johnson