Why Creative Types should get together more often

Yesterday I had a visit from a longtime friend and model horse community member, Susan Young. She comes out for a day once a year when here in Colorado to visit her family, who live in Boulder. We spend a couple hours getting caught up on our lives and do some creative show-and-tell. Sue makes exquisite scale-model tack for model horses. If you aren’t familiar with her work you should be, and here’s a link to her Timaru Star II Blog.

Since Sue specializes in miniature horse “accessories”, while she was here I wanted to pick her brain about a little project I have in the works. In a previous blog post I mentioned the customized large “Boreas” Percheron china that I fired this past week into bisque. It is ready to be glazed a solid Percheron black. But I designed it to have proper Percheron flights and fans, in the braided mane and tail. So I have to make those. And I wanted to make them from scratch. They can’t be made in ceramic and look realistic. I just couldn’t think of where to find white wire of the right scale. It felt like I had seen it somewhere but I just wasn’t coming up with it. This is what I have to build:


My thanks to Kim Bjorgo-Thorne for the photo!

So I ran this by Sue, who said I should look for electrical wire.  It comes coated in colored plastic. Off I went to Home Depot, and easily found this:


I knew she would be able to help me!! I only need the white-wire side but now I’ve got enough wire for draft horse flights to last a lifetime! I’ll be making the raffia-stuff from ribbon and sticking each flight down into holes I’ve made in the china horse’s neck..

This leads to the moral of my story, which is something I learn over and over in my arty journey: Don’t be a reclusive artist. Yes, many of us are introverted, solitary types, and I definitely like to work alone. I am not into taking classes where everyone paints together or whatever. I feel very shy/uncomfortable creating art in public. I will always be that way, I am not one of those exhibitionist-artists who crave the limelight! But is IS good to get together with other artists even if it pushes your social comfort zone. Because the cross-pollination of ideas and techniques is so necessary and beneficial to creative growth! I totally admit that I am the textbook “I Know What I Like And I Like What I Know” artist. But I have been putting myself out there and more open to learning new things, new tools, etc. I’m always better for it (even if I have to recover from too much people-time, ha ha).

So get out there and meet up with someone who makes something you admire. That’s my advice for the summer!