To me, inspiration and motivation go hand in hand, if I’m not motivated to work, I simply have to find something to inspire me and quick! Because I make many of my wallets out of newspapers, I’m often inspired by other people’s art…cartoonists, news photographers, fashion advertisements etc. I’ll see an image and wonder how I can incorporate it into the front panel of a wallet and this sets about a flurry of cutting, measuring and collaging to see to see if I can make something amazing happen in its transformation.
It’s hard for me to work with paper I don’t care for. I know it’s important to have a wide variety of patterns because my wallets are accessories and every woman’s taste is different, but I try to choose paper I love, like or well, almost like.
There have been a few exceptions. I was drawn to this Peter Pan paper because of the colors, but when I began working with it, i discovered that I hated the images.
In fact, one of the images of the Indian Chief from the story was so offensive in its negative stereotype of Native Americans that I folded the paper on the inside of the wallet, so no one would see it. And Tinkerbell? Who ever knew that my favorite fairy friend could look like such a brat?
I got through it and guess what? The wallet sold the first day out at Farmer’s Market, accidentally got listed in my Etsy shop and sold there too, so now I have to make another and quick. What’s my inspiration to work on it now? I’m motivated by the customer’s delight in the paper and of how perfect it will be as a gift for her daughter in-law. And in most cases, that’s motivation enough. Plus, I do kind of like a swarthy Captain Hook.
The picture at the top of the post is inspiration in action and based solely on my joy of finding an image I loved. It was made with a hot pink newspaper from Italy that’s targeted towards male sports enthusiasts. The image is from the corner of a car advertisement (if you look closely you can see the front window of the car in the bottom of the photo). As soon as I saw it, I was inspired to turn it from an ad to a very unusual wallet. And the work was easy. It’s so fun to see the transformation and as I work with images like I love, I’m excited as a little kid who has a big secret because “everyone is going to just die when they see this!”
Of course, there’s always a balance and by the time I’ve folded my seventy second cherry blossom wallet, the excitement in the end result wanes, but I know there will always be paper I’ve never worked with to get me inspired again. These are next on my list!
I’ll keep you posted!