Sunday, June 17, 2012

Art School

Lisa Solberg Slit 2012

As I've been saying quite a bit recently I'm going through a bit of a challenging, soul searching kind of period, and I have been asking myself lots of questions about who I am, and who I want to be. 

For as long as I can remember I have wanted to do something creative with my life, and even though I am pretty much living that dream, being self-employed has meant I don't really get the same growth and experience as I would working in a team or with a bigger company. I have to set myself challenges, and have to be very self-disciplined, which I don't always succeed at. I also only really get to be creative about 10% of the time - the vast majority of my time is spend sewing orders, answering emails, posting and all of those other really tedious things!

I have been thinking a lot about the things I make, and how lately they have been leaning a little more on the commercial side of things. The reality of the situation is that my current art form (lingerie) is quite limiting in terms of its practicality - it has to be worn, and it has to be worn under clothes, and it has to be comfortable. Of course there is so much you can do with those limitations, but I think I am really missing art for arts sake. Just making something beautiful for the sake of beauty, without that constant questions 'will it sell', 'how many figures will this shape flatter', and so on.

The artwork I wanted to share today is by a current artist called Lisa Solberg. I have been obsessed with her paintings ever since seeing them on Bleach Black a little while ago. Every time I see her work I just want to pick up a paint brush and work with colour. It inspires me so much and all I can think about is painting onto fabric, and including more of this desire into Hopeless pieces. 

Of course I am never short of ideas - and this is an idea I've had for years, it just all comes down to time, and money. Sometimes living the creative dream isn't all its cracked up to be, and I don't mean to sound depressing but I think its important to get this stuff out sometimes! 

I would love to hear from anyone who, like me, might be feeling frustrated with their own work, or struggling to find themselves.

Gaby xoxo


Valerie said...

Hi Gabby,
Though I’m not at the same point in my fashion career as you, I can kind of relate. I’ve been constantly faced with obstacles since the beginning.
Preparing for Uni/TAFE applications in 2002 I was faced with a lot of negativity, saying it’s a tough course to get into, it’s hard to get a job, etc. Happily I was accepted, however due to personal and financial issues I wasn’t able to complete that course.
A decade has passed, and no matter how many times I’ve walked away and said it’s just too hard and that I’ll try a different career path, I always come back to fashion in one form or another.
Now in 2012 I’m committed more than ever to completing my education, which at a part time schedule will take approx 6years. It seems like a lifetime – but I have to keep telling myself when I’m stuck in the un-creative job I’m in, that it’s a means to an end, and I’ll get out of here and follow my dream. I’m constantly faced with the financial issues and using more time to work, but that means less time doing homework. And socially, well, there’s not much time to be social.
It’s frustrating and I’m constantly reminding myself about the why, in order to do the how. Always trying to stay positively inspired.
I can only imagine the challenges of a self-employed designer. There’s always that aspect of creativity and business of making money from it, and the creative compromising that comes from that. I always thought if I were to start up shop, I would sell online, consignment in shops, and weekend markets. I hear stories of how Lover, and Sass and Bide started in markets. And then I think of how Allanah Hill sold her business to be more profitable and design more, and then Luella Bartley who shot to fame, and soon after ceased business. I guess it’s like you need two heads, a creative type and a business type, and also some financial back up.
I’m sorry I can’t assist with any useful business knowledge, but I can somewhat relate to your frustration and I whole-heartedly support you and your work which I’ve been a fan of since your first collection.
Wishing you all the best!

Valerie said...

Also, sorry about the MEGA long post.

On another note. Love the painting! :)

Lola Devlin said...

I always like to play a little game with myself. Because I don't particularly love sewing a pair of knickers (for me, it takes quite a long time), for every pair or three that I sew, I then like to make something for the shop that makes me giggle - whether it be a little house jacket, a gorgeous little fluff of a babydoll or slip or something that someone could buy just to own, like a piece of art. This is how I feel about strumpet & pink knickers - I would love to own them for beauty's sake but may not ever actually wear them for fear of ruining them. I think you will be surprised, the fun stuff sells well every once in a while and I think you shouldn't stop yourself from indulging in creating / showing off. I am reminded of that great red/pink chiffon fluff you made in you Hunted collection... anyways, my simple rule is for every one or few things I make for someone else, I try to make something for myself whether it is for me to actually wear or something fun I would love to have in the shop. I'd get very jealous otherwise...xxL