The Evolution of an Idea

I’ve been working on a new idea as of late and I am really excited to share the process with you all. . I’m one of those artists who really likes to share my creative process with people – I am constantly sending updated phone photos of my current works and sketchbook pages to my close friends. I know that some artists don’t like to share their process, and I can respect that. But for me, part of my creative process is the sharing aspect.

This idea started about a week ago. Something that I do as part of my “research” is create computer documents of inspiring Disney scenes that I like to refer to when I’m low on ideas. To do this I use DisneyScreencaps.com, which is probably one of the coolest websites ever.  I have a list of scenes I found inspiring as I watched different movies that I didn’t have a chance to sketch. I then go to this site and find those scenes and save the images to my documents. Sometimes I find other inspiring scenes I didn’t think of before. Last week was a prime example. I was looking though the Robin Hood images (for the record – Robin Hood isn’t even one of my favorites, it was just next on my list) and came across this:

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It’s a completely random scene where the snake is floating around in a balloon to spy on Robin Hood. Normally a scene such as this wouldn’t even register on my radar as inspiring, but something in me just kept coming back to the balloons even after I was done going through images for the day.

That night I was doing some brainstorming about where I wanted to go next with my work and started doing some sketches. The balloons came back to me and the wheels in my head started turning.

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Can you see what I was thinking about? The balloons started to become trees made out of cardboard tubes and yarn balls. Once I hit on that, the idea started to evolve even more and I started to dream about making a GIANT tree! The yarn balls would be the branches/leaves and the trunk would be made out of cardboard tubes and paper mache (to keep it sturdy). I knew this was something I needed to do as part of my “Next step” (Which is to make my still lifes more permanent, stand alone sculptures and someday fill a whole room with giant knitted forms).

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When I get an idea, I tend to really stick to it; I started knitting white balls the next day in pursuit of my tree dream. As the balls got done, I started to assemble them into bunches and decided instead of one big mass the tree needed multiple branches with bunches on them. It was after I finished my second bunch last night that something new began to form in my head.

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I set the bunch on my bed to take a picture and send my good friend Rachel (one of the many that I share everything with) and saw something I didn’t expect: I liked it just as it was. There was something about the way the form sat and the way the stitches all went in different directions and all the different views one could get from walking around it. And it didn’t need “branches” to achieve this. And just like that, the tree was out the window (for now) and the mini ball sculptures were in. I spent the next thirty minutes filling two more pages of my sketchbook with tons of ideas.

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So now I want to make more ball bunches and make stand alone sculptures out of them. And maybe even make paintings of them if I can manage it. the ideas seem endless with this concept and I can’t wait to get started!

Isn’t it amazing how a simple scene from a simple movie can turn into such a complex and interesting work of art? I always love it when things like this happen and I am so glad that I have the next few months to work through ideas such as this. Expect great things !

~Lisa

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