This week’s calligraphy challenge was to create something with the theme of flowers without using any color, only black and white. I had spent the afternoon weeding and the only thing I could see in my mind were shoots and leggy weeds. I created this one using sumi ink, Pentel grey ink brush pens, and a wink of Stella for glitter. The photo doesn’t show very well but I added the wink of Stella to presume a hint of fragrance.
This is the second challenge we have had in which we were not allowed to use color. As an artist I realized this week how hard it is to not pick up any markers, pencils, or anything with color. I found it liberating and limiting at the same time. I enjoy using the breadth of tools I own, and have hope that our next prompt will not limit us on colors.
It’s funny how we learn things and then cling to them very passionately. We become experts in what we do and find ourselves stumped or frustrated when we can’t do it the normal way. As we grow our skills we develop our own internal standards for the work we produce, and when we are limited in what tools we can use it can impact our ability to produce work at the same level. We forget how we started and how we had to learn to use all sorts of tools before we could produce at the live for which we currently produce.
It’s like being without email, or a cell phone, or any technology at all. We have become so accustom to how we do things that we have to remind ourselves how to produce when our tools are limited or non-existent. We have to back down our demands and think simple, clean, low tech. We can do it, it’s just a different challenge. We have to go back in time to before we knew everything and remind our skills how it to do it old school.
It is a great reminder of how far we have come. And it is a great reminder to be thankful for the technology and tools we possess. It makes us think differently and be grateful for all we have and the experience we employ without a thought.
Today as you use the tools of your life be grateful, and remind yourself what life was like before you knew how to use those tools. Be kind and encouraging to those still learning the tools, and pass along your knowledge and expertise. Add a little color to the lives of others.