Wednesday, February 22, 2012

a year: as loop

These following submissions astounded me.

First, because this is how I view a year, which was the root inspiration for this project.
Second, because none of the participants needed any further explanation other than my written directions. The first one pictured below was sent back by mail. It is by one of my brothers. Neither of us were ever taught to "see" this way, and we had never discussed this before, but (unlike our other two siblings) this is how we spatially see a year:

...even down to seeing more months crammed into the summer's end of the ellipse than in the winter's.

He included notes:
"- ellipse rotates depending on time of year
- when thinking in Japanese the months become numbers"

He describes himself as:
"mature, caring, Japan, dance, strength, unique"

The following person read the instructions, instantly drew this (below) and handed it back. What makes some of us see a year as a track with distinct points on it for each place in time?

This submission (above) was the vision of someone who is a:
"Writer, Los Angeles, Art collector"

The beautifully-drawn spiral below came all the way from New Zealand:

The artist describes herself:
"resourceful, friend, free, visionary, dancer, Kiwi, worshipper, mid life, listener, sweet sadness"

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

a year: as road / line

Another theme is a road or path. Some see the months as a jumble of roads that form a year, others as a straight path leading into the horizon or traversing a space.

The submission below is a beautiful example of a simple yet perfectly explanatory drawing.
It came with a written explanation:


She describes herself as:
  • Female
  • 36
  • white
  • raised in America
  • non-practicing poet
  • professional procrastinator

This next submission...

...was the vision of someone who is self-described as:
  • meticulous
  • tenacious
  • dedicated
  • introverted
  • snarky

The next one seems to take the view of standing in the present, looking forward to the year stretching out ahead in the distance:

She is: "giver, taker, lover, maker, hugger, kisser, fixer-upper, blender, mixer, cooker, eater, liar, cheater, biker, typer, writer, thinker, laugher, cryer, grumbler, winker, judger, fighter, make-righter, dancer, screamer, seeker, dreamer"

This submission (below) was the vision of someone...

...who is self-described as a:
  • Fat
  • Funny
  • Intense
  • Artist
  • Obnoxious
  • Husband

And of course, every artist's mother must participate in their daughter's projects. My mom was straight to the point:

She describes herself as a:
  • Consultant
  • Democrat
  • Separated
  • Czech/Finnish Ancestry
  • Renewable Energy
  • Christian
  • Love to travel
  • Love my children

This (above) was the vision of someone who defines himself as:
  • Logical
  • Selfless
  • Supportive
  • Strong
  • Mature
  • Not an Artist

    Above, describes himself as:

    • bold
    • shy 
    • loud
    • observant
    • quick
    • creative
    • orderly
    • agile
    • loving
    • imperfect
    • studious
    • understanding
    • misunderstood

    This next submission shows the months flowing downward. She wrote:

    • Retired teacher
    • Quilter
    • Bridge Player
    • Unitic
    • the Sun; a breeze
    • Traveler
    • Widow
    • Black American
    • Clock
    • Democrat

    This next submission seems to show a year as a road emerging from a hazy cloud.
    It was the vision of someone who is:

    • Timeless 
    • Grateful 
    • Seeker 
    • Light  
    • Beautiful 
    • Blessed

    Monday, February 20, 2012

    a year: as circle

    Participants were asked to draw how they see the idea of "a year". 

    So far, 21 participants have sent their cards back.  Most people so far have treated the theme in a more  metaphorical way than I was attempting to elicit.  It has been a challenge to explain this idea through words. The problem was partially with my original directions, so now I have begun to clarify that I am interested in how each person spatially lays out that span of time in their mind. I have noticed that explaining it verbally seems to be more effective.

    One interesting surprise has been that some people claim that they do not actually "see" a year or any span of time at all. As for the more symbolic/metaphorical responses, I am still trying to decide if/how they will be used for the project.

    For the participants who have displayed a spatial representation, a few themes are already evident, such as the circle:

    Each person was asked to describe themselves.
    This submission (above) was the vision of someone who is:
    "Open, Liberal, Fun, Atheist, Logical, Controlling (sometimes!)"

    This submission (above) was the vision of a:
    "Fashion Designer, female, easy-going, optimistic, hardworking" person.