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The Process of Union

Of late, I've been inspired by the pink/black combination showing up in artwork by Carissa Paige (here, here), Mati Rose (here, here), and iHanna (here). So, having yet another snow day (is spring here yet?!), I played and experimented with this color palette all afternoon in my Busy Day Journal.

This spread contains a variety of materials: acrylic paint, stickers, collage bits (found notes, receipts, illustrations, magazine clippings, tissue paper), rubber date stamp, washi tape from here, india ink, and white gel pen.

I had a wonderful start, gluing down this and that without too much thought, pulled along by instinct and the process of creating. It was when I started noticing the results of my work, liking the way it was all coming together, and switching to a focus on the outcome (perhaps you recognize the fear of not wanting to "mess it all up"?) that I started fumbling and growing frustrated. So I threw a bit more paint on and called it quits; personally, it is best to just walk away when I have my focus on perfection rather than enjoyment of the creative process.

I also noticed repeating symbols emerging from the pages. Union is a theme that snuck in a few times, from a fortune cookie fortune (that apparently was covered up) that said, "In union, there is strength." to a free sticker I got at a concert a few months ago. I noticed the irony, too, in having difficulty unifying the pages while they shouted "union" at me. There is a repetition of the feminine, too, from the text on the right side of the page – part of a magazine ad – to the two illustrations of women, to a bit of text that reads, "little girl".

I think, though completely unintentional, thoughts about Valentine's Day, love, romance, and marriage emerged in my artwork. This is something that I adore about art: sometimes it provides a release of intense emotion, and other times it reveals my own hidden emotions to me!

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