Creative Space and Time: Podcast with Ricë Freeman-Zachery

To write Creative Time and Space: Making Room for Making Art, Ricë Freeman-Zachery worked all last year getting a ton of information and tips out of twelve artists (including me). She also got great photos of artwork, drawings, quilts, sculptures, collages, sketchbooks, and studio space from everyone.

CreativeTimeSpace-cover2For my contribution to the book, I think I wrote about 20 pages of answers to her many questions and submitted upteen photos of drawings, quilts, sketchbooks and my studio. The finished book is densely layered with the photos, tips, challenges, and personal stories from all of the artists and organized into ten chapters with intriguing titles such as:

  • Exploring Time – What exactly does “Time” mean to you?
  • Stuck in Time – When you need a tow truck to get out of a rut
  • Mental Space – What goes on up there in your head?
  • Soul Space – Where you receive permission to play
  • Creative Habits – Music, candles and companionable cats

This fall Ricë is doing a series of podcasts with the twelve artists she wrote about in the book. In yesterday’s podcast with me, Rice asked more challenging questions. Then towards the end of the podcast, in her usual articulate fashion, she was able to sum up my rambling answers into a concise and helpful set of tips (read her post about the interview on her blog Voodoo Cafe: Notes on Art, Writing, & the Creative Life.) Here are some topics we discussed, but to tell you the truth, the 45 minutes flew by!

  • Finding the best places to do creative work
  • Using the whole brain
  • Developing resource bank of ideas to avoid the “blank page” syndrome once you get back to studio

The other artists who contributed to the book:
Tracy Bautista, Theo Ellsworth, Lisa Lichtenfels, Chris Malone, Thomas Mann, Teesha Moore, Judy Coates Perez, Kelly Rae Roberts, Lori Marsh Sandstedt, Carter Seibels, Susan Sorrell, Roz Stendahl, and Judy Wise.


Who do you owe?


Sure, becoming an artist is a long rough path with lots of hard knocks. We all know that. But who do you owe — for tiny little favors or inspirations along the way? Although we often hear about mentors and role models, sometimes it’s the smallest of things that give us light and illuminate our path. And it’s good to remember and be thankful for those.

This photo was taken in Febuary 2004, back before I cleaned out and took all the old junk to the salvation army (aren’t digital photos great — I can always reference a date using the file info). A friend from college has a daughter who is an artist, and she asked for help to recreate the daughter’s drawings for a bedroom mural.  After scanning, resizing, and combining her small drawings into a scale drawing that would fit the wall space in a bedroom alcove, I had learned the rudiments of what was to become my pattern-making process for making wall quilts.

Not only that, I was exposed to a wonderful imaginative world of cats who went to garage sales and sushi bars, cats who competed in the Olympics, picture stories of mermaids and other characters acted out by the author/artist.

I can’t tell you how all this entered into my artistic psyche. But that it did.