• Brooke Rowlands

Keeping the creative flow during the Pandemic

I think we all can agree that the past two months have been a whirlwind for everyone. As an artist most of the ways an artist networks have been put on hold. Art events have been cancelled or postponed indefinitely, local business supplies have been shut down, and networking events have been cut off.

Although all of these things have been a result of the corona virus there have been many positive things resulting in the cancellations. Local art shows/annual fundraisers that have been cancelled have been altered to accommodate both artists and patrons with going virtual, allowing a safe way to still purchase art and support local artists/organizations.

It really has been wonderful to see the local art scene pull together and still work hard for artist's and their communities. It hasn't been easy for most artists to stay creative or to focus on making new art during this crisis, and with the continuing support of the community it's noticeably helping local artists continue their work. Most annual fundraisers are now giving artists 100% commission for works that are sold, and allowing site tours for murals to go virtual as well.

Since the quarantine, I have been a creative whirlwind and I'm not really sure if the Pandemic has ignited this creativity or if I needed to dive deeper in my art to process all of this. Either way I'm grateful for the ability to still create while experiencing all of the feels on a daily basis, and I thought I would share with you all some new work that I have been enjoying tremendously lately.

I started with little color studies to help me decide on a new color palette, and with doing so it's lead me into a whole new body of work. I decided to have fun with watercolor and use up supplies I've had on hand since most art supply stores were closed. I recently ordered a ream of archival paper and thought making some works on paper would be a fun way to take advantage of the materials on hand.

At first the color studies launched tons of new ideas, and I knew I wanted to add some botanical elements, but also keep it calming and therapeutic. I started using the same concept of the color studies but on a larger scale, making the circles larger so I can add floras surrounding.

The first piece I created was inspired by Magnolia flowers. I started with ink and then filled in with colored pencils to compliment the watercolors. Then as a finishing touch I added gold leaf. I enjoyed making this piece so much that I decided to keep going and stay in the flow.

(Water - SOLD)

Since completing this piece I couldn't stop and went on to make several more. These works on paper have been so much fun and freeing to create, and working with a different medium has kept my creativity alive and well.

(Work in progress - Crocus flowers)

Since making these over the past 2 months it has opened up many different ideas that I'm now venturing, and has helped me cope with the current events. Art, for me, has always been a way of expression and necessity, and without it I think the past two months would have felt differently.

It's not easy to continue to stay motivated while it feels like the world around you is falling apart. However, giving yourself grace and practicing patience goes a long way. Starting small, and allowing to work intuitively helps bigger ideas come to light, and it allows the freedom of thought and expression to poke it's way back into the light. Giving yourself the creative space to be open with yourself and let things fall into place is really freeing. So turn off that phone, turn the news off (If only for an hour) and allow yourself the time to explore creatively.

Love - Brooke

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©2019 by Brooke Rowlands.