Kerstin E.

Alignment

Alignment was a difficult word.Even if I have dictionaries both as books and on the internet it has been hard to find a translation into Swedish that seem relevant. I think I have figured out from Janes text what alignment is meant to represent in this Workshop but it has been difficult to get exactly the right context. But besides language difficulties this has been an interesting week. 

To figure out what you are good at is challenging. In Sweden we are still under the influence of the “law of Jante” which says that you shall not think you are something and you shall not think you are better than anyone else. That are hard rules to live by and they probably came from that very strict religious people that had strong influence about 100 years ago. So for many Swedish people it can be hard to say that you are good at something and even worse to say that you are better than most people. 

When it comes to my own creative sides I suddenly felt that I am not good at anything. I can a lot of different things but have jumped between things so I can a lot but nothing very deeply. To figure our what I want to do is one of my reasons for taking this class. This week I really have had to think about it. Some of the things I do, like knitting, is more a sort of craft to make something useful. That is good to be able to do but it is not the creative side I want to develop. The distinction between craft and art is something I also feel is strange. I think that much craft can be art as well. Can someone who does things that can be used not call themselves artist? I have been thinking about this a lot this week. I do bookbinding but I do the books in my own way with cloth and paper I choose. Sometimes I do my own bookcloth. And then I fill the book with my own sketches, patterns and words. Is that art? Is the handmade book itself art or does it transit into art when I draw pictures in it?  

Even if I like fabric and yarn I feel that it is the paper that I come back to. Paper and pens, colours and words. When I get creative ideas it is in that direction my thoughts go. Maybe I will feel differently when I start to work with my new loom, but I think it will take some time to train my technique at weaving. I will start with some simple rugs just to play with stripes and colours and see were it leads me. Will my rugs be art or craft?

So my conclusion after much thinking is that it is the paper and pens I would like to go forward with. But not just flat paper, you can use paper in a lot of ways. 

To make myself to feel that I can something I have taken some photos from my sketchbooks and done a photo collage. And looking at them I feel that I have learnt a lot but that I also has a lot to develop and that feels very good. It is only 33 photos so I have a way to go to make them part of a 100-project. 

The other picture is a sort of sketch/pattern that I am pleased with. I will continue to play with sketches, preferably in one colour, in this way.