I was reminded of this when I spent the holiday weekend nursing a cold. Thankfully it wasn't serious, but I didn't feel like sketching, let alone working at the studio. Some artists may suffer for their work, but I'm not one of them.
I needed something to keep me busy though, so I finally got around to finishing a project I've had on my list for several months now.
I've recently become aware of the vogue for turning magazines into useful objects such as baskets and placemats. I didn't need a basket, but one thing I have needed for a while is a shoe mat. I could have simply bought one, but I had a pile of Art in America magazines waiting to be used for some colorful project. With what strength I could muster, I heaved them out of their hiding place and decided to make my own shoe mat.
|My unsuspecting pile of magazines|
|The magazines after an evening of salubrious tearing|
I then took the individual sheets and sorted them into piles loosely based on color. I ended up creating ten different categories based on the colors that appeared most frequently: white, pink, red, brown/orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, rainbow, and black. I'd thought about doing something witty and art-historically based, such as a Renaissance art pile, an abstract expressionist pile, a performance art pile, etc., but frankly, my mind was too foggy from my cold haze to handle such an undertaking.
...tear it in half...
...fold each torn sheet in half....
I was able to get two strips for every magazine page. I did this for each my my piles, until I had hundreds of strips in different colors.
|My piles of strips|
|A test mat. I ultimately ended up making them a little smaller.|
|Two of my color groups: blue and purple|
|The completed mats. The kitchen has the best light, so I photographed them all here.|
|The mats as they look in my closet.|
|My mats with my shoes on them|
A project like this takes a lot of time, but it's easy, repetitive work that's perfect when you're sick but still want something to do. I suppose I could have just as easily gone out and bought something, but that wouldn't have been nearly as memorable.