Tuesday, 15 November 2011

On not being scared of the dark

Tomorrow I'm starting a short new workshop with an artist I admire fantastically. Her work is beautiful, funny, passionate, Japanese influenced, technically breathtaking, sexy, intellectual and dark.

The hardest thing about workshops, apart from the fact that they finish at 10.00 pm and I no longer live around the corner, is coming up with ideas.

I realised that all the artists at the studio that I admire are not scared to embrace darkness in their work. (I don't want to link here but if you were to say, Google I devour tiger and wife in images you might find the artist I mean.)

They are fearless in their subject matter and execution and I'm realising I don't want to make pictures that are just pretty or superficial. I want them to be about something. Maybe I'm just shallow but tapping into your imagination, your fears and desires and drives, is not so easy.

I remembered my dream though and did a little research on chained bears. My unconscious was clearly politely tapping me on the shoulder going "Excuse me, but will this be any use?" Chained bears it is then.

I came across this sad post (but with happy video about bear rescue.) It's good title for the print too - the Cruel Life of Dancing Bears. I'll let you know how it turns out on the other blog.


  1. I only have a dream that's worth interpreting once or twice a year. The rest are just classic worrying dreams or a rehash of the day's events. The good ones really do trigger something though. I'm glad you have your subconscious on tap.

  2. I have them too usually B. The epic ones seem to feature animals a lot, I don't know why.

  3. Read up about farming bears for their bile in China, and prepare to feel horrible for the rest of the day.

  4. Did actually make me cry. Cheers.

    There's something about bears. Partly because they are glorious creatures, but also because when they're standing up there is something very human-like about them.

    Just remembered that the only time I've seen a real live bear was on a school trip to Russia years ago, they took us to the circus. I thought it was a man in a bear suit but it was a real bear. Horrifying.

  5. Here's some nice bear stuff: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rtcC738Ftw

  6. Adorable.

    "During hibernation, bears don't eat, drink, urinate or defecate for five to seven months." Blimey.

    Look - 8 month old black bear cubs