Friday, November 23, 2012
On several occasions I have been asked to share my pet peeves when it comes to art and the art community. My answer is always the same: exclusivity and snobbery. I get my knickers in a twist whenever I am confronted by or hear a story about people in the art community who maintain that art and creativity belong only to a select group. A trained artist who denies the validity of those who are self taught. A fine artist looking down on a mixed media artist. A mixed media artist who dismisses a scrapbooker. And don't even get me started on the debate between art and craft.
It is my strong feeling that creativity belongs to everybody - at every skill level and in any domain. There are probably as many definitions of the word artist as there are artists in the world. I personally believe that anybody who feels comfortable with the term can rightfully call themselves an artist. And while I respect the fact that not everybody agrees with that...I don't have to like it. We are all so often confronted with judgmental and divisive attitudes in our lives and in the world. Why would anybody want to bring that into the world of creativity?
I have always tried to be inclusive in all the projects and collaborations I have developed. On my blog, well known career artists share space with hobbyists who may not yet have a following. And there are definitely times when I favor the work of the latter. It may be naive, but I believe that we can all learn from each other and benefit from the blend.
To that end, I am embarking on an adventure that I hope will shine a bit of light on this subject and perhaps even break down some boundaries. As of today, I am an official member of the Blog Team at Spellbinders Paper Arts. You can read their announcement here. Spellbinders is a company traditionally connected with the scrapbooking and card making communities. They are known for many products but perhaps are best known for their incredible and innovative die cutting and embossing machines and tools, items not traditionally used by many mixed media artists.
As part of my tenure on the Blog Team, beginning in January I will be creating and presenting a project using their products (along with many others) on my blog every Wednesday. It is my hope that I can introduce a host of new supplies, tools and techniques to my mixed media people that will serve to increase their arsenal. And it is equally my hope that perhaps a bit of my mixed media style will rub off on to the scrapbookers and card makers who can then add new techniques to their tool boxes as well.
Having had the pleasure of spending time with the Spellbinders team, I know the quality and creativity that comes along with all their ideas and products. They are truly a visionary company and I am thrilled to now be a part of their family. They had me at "you can make photo transfers with this machine." I am truly thrilled to get this party started and equally excited to have you join me on this adventure as we explore beyond.