After leaving the safety net of the undergrad degree structure I struggled to find my feet within my own practice. I tried to create some new pieces following my deconstructed shoe theme but it just didn’t work and I grew increasingly frustrated. Eventually (after a brutally honest heart to heart with a sculptor who is a visiting lecturer on my MA course - thanks Brian Falconbridge!) I gave myself permission to move on, to see that collection as a good foundation but it didn't define me so if it didn't flow now I shouldn't continue to let me hold me back.
I spent some time reflecting upon and analysing my previous projects, which ones were successful, why were they successful, which ones I liked, why I liked them etc and it became obvious that there was a strong theme running through every single project throughout my BA degree. Aside from being minimal and contemporary they were all created using one continuous sheet of metal, no additions. So far from the idea of ‘trying something new’ I am continuing a visual language I hadn’t acknowledged until I stepped back far enough to see the bigger picture.
It is probably no surprise to hear that once I did allow myself to move away from the shoe collection suddenly the ideas started flowing again and I think I came up with initial sketches for about 10 new pieces within a week, more than the previous 6 months. I will however add that creating a form with a base, a flat chest and a round body out of one continuous sheet of metal is not easy at all, in fact it almost destroyed my will to live on many occasions but I'm too stubborn to let the silver get the better of me so the collection is continuing to develop.