Wednesday, September 28, 2011

KSA on Inspiration:

For our business cards here at KSA, we are asked to come up with three “likes”, or things that inspire us. Trying to narrow down my interests was not an easy task. I finally decided on sketchbooks, collecting, and DIY projects.

I feel it is very important for anyone, not only artists, to carry around a sketchbook. I use mine not only to draw but to jot down ideas, take notes, and write to-do lists. As you know, solutions to problems do not always come to you while sitting at your desk. Instead, they come while you’re at the grocery store, sitting in a waiting room, or having dinner at a restaurant. Keeping a sketchbook within arm’s reach can help capture these ideas and thoughts when they occur.

Collecting. I can blame my mom for this one. She has collections of tea pots, buttons, shells, and other knick knacks sprinkled throughout her house. Now that I have inherited this fascination with finding items to add to a collection, I have realized I think the challenge of how to display them is even more exciting. I once worked with my dad to design a wooden display to showcase my glass swizzle sticks. (I have no idea how or why I accumulated a swizzle stick collection) but the test tube-like holder is so unique and beautiful it makes a great conversation starter.

Along with sketchbooks and collections, I love DIY projects. I am constantly looking for potential in my surroundings. Whether it is interiors, a forgotten piece of furniture, or a garage sale find, I can’t help but think about how I can use it for an art project. Since moving to Richmond, I have walked by tons of abandoned furniture on the sidewalks. Most of the time there is a reason the person left it but you can occasionally come across a real gem. For example, I recently found an ugly, maroon hutch that I just knew had potential and could not pass it up. With cleaning and a few coats of paint it looks brand new! There is typically a lot of trial and error with these projects but I find this is a good thing. I learn about new materials and techniques and try to improve with each venture.

Whether it’s drawing in my sketchbook, collecting, or do-it-yourself projects, my three “likes” help express what makes me, me. This creativity that I surround myself with in the evenings and weekends carries over into my work here at KSA. Surrounding yourself with things that inspire or make you happy in your everyday life is essential to having a positive and productive workplace.

Gillian Bowman

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