PEOPLE AND THEIR STORIES
I was recently asked in an interview what I like about people and I was stumped..taken off guard I couldn't think of a thing to say which made me look a little bitter and cynical I think! Now that i've had time to give it a good mull over though I realized that they are my main sources of inspiration for my work because every single person is so fascinating and slightly odd in their own way, and everyone has a story to tell.
When I made my film My First Crush I interviewed about 60 people about love and childhood infatuation and their tale's were so funny and bizarre and I was suprised how many people were willing to share such a private experience. I got to re-experience this process recently when I went out with a documentary film maker in Washington Square Park and interviewed people about happiness. If I had just sat in the park on a normal day I would have probably people watched for a bit, stared off into space, and then gone home..but in approaching almost everyone in the park, I met people a woman who survived the holocaust, the happiest woman in the world, a very down to earth clown and a woman who loved her dog so much she had him printed on her t-shirt. It made me so much want to rush home and animate their stories as soon as possible and share them with people who might be affected by them in some small way.
I very rarely venture outdoors, thinking it much wiser to stay in my studio and draw as much as possible.. which is a very foolish thing to do. I only ever realize this however as soon as I step outside and go exploring. There is nothing more relaxing than spending a day in the Natural History Museum, drawing the bizarre expressions on the taxidermied animals. The scenarios and beautiful backdrops they create are great inspiration for colour, composition and subject matter. Of course the zoo is also awesome for observation, and I am a push over for the red panda, and also dog parks. I am also guilty of spending a lot of time in starbucks drawing people..which is a terrible habit but I do love a good chai tea latte. Just going out to one off art events and craft fairs are a great way to see what everyone else is up to and it makes you feel refreshed. This weekend I am off to the V and A Village Fete (link: http://www.vam.ac.uk/activ_events/events/friday_evenings/friday_late/events/friday_late_july09/index.html) to see the likes of Rob Ryan and It's Nice That create ace interactive games..last year I won a lovely cardboard cat. So in summing up.. I find if I spend all my time inside drawing from reference books and google images (I admit it) then I start to worry that my work is looking repetitive and flat..it's best to put on a scarf, go outside and wake that brain up.