One Inch of Art for a Week

In October, my neighbor and I went on an open studio tour in our neighborhood.  At one studio, the nice woman gave us both a handful of 1” squares and encouraged us to try to find the time to make 1” of art.  Miraculously (or maybe she knew exactly how many squares she was handing us) I wound up with seven squares.  I resolved to set aside a time to make one inch of art for a week, as a tribute to my artist friend, MaryBeth Leonard.

A few years ago, MaryBeth created a project for herself she called “A Drawing a Day for a Year.”  She catalogued all of her drawings on a blog and even wrote great descriptions and stories about each drawing.

Those little squares sat in a pile on my hutch for five-ish months. I looked at them every day.  Eventually, they began to turn into clutter, and I decided that it was time to act.

The first thing that I did was set out all of the squares on a sheet of paper and tape them down.  There were all sorts of fun colors and deciding on an order and a pattern gave the project a defined scope that made me comfortable.

Next, I decided to choose one medium for all of it.  Instead of colored pencils or markers or crayons, I decided to use my collection of teeny nail polishes.  Sort-of weird, but also sort-of artsy.  I like the dimension that you can create with nail polish, I had a bunch of different colors, and it would be a challenging medium.  I would use the bottle brushes and a toothpick to apply the paint.

Another interesting component of using nail polish was the patience factor.  I learned this lesson the hard way when I tried to add different colors without letting the first step dry. Once I figured that bit out, it was a nice part of the process to step away from the work for a few minutes at a time.

I left the whole project sitting out on the dining table all week so that I wouldn’t forget.  I liked not having to set up my art supplies to get to work on my project, but I don’t like having stuff just sitting out all the time.  Obviously, this is why serious artists have studios.

Here are the results of my inch of art experiment.  Maybe I’ll stick with writing.

3 Replies to “One Inch of Art for a Week”

  1. I like your inch of art. I still have some of you earlier pieces, some even on display.

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