Saturday, August 18, 2012

Personal Work

We're coming up to my ten year high school reunion. I know, I know, I am young. Thank you. 
Nothing is set in stone as far as what we are doing. So far there is an informal group set up on Facebook and our class president is planning based on posted conversations and a survey.
I am looking forward to seeing people. I am terrible at keeping in touch and while Facebook has been great to see who is married, has kids, etc., nothing beats catching up in real life. 
I also want to brag about how I am actually working in the field I studied in college!

The impetus for this post however is the fact that I still have artwork from over ten years ago! I mean ten years has flown by! I shoved work from high school in a couple of brown paper portfolios, stuck 'em under my bed (in all five apartments!) and forgot about it.

I just pulled them out, covered in dust, and went through what was there. (I think I have done this a handful of times over the years, but still had stacks of work with the addition of college work) I decided to keep things based on whether or not I would use them as class examples or if I had an emotional attachment to the work. I had pages and pages of figure drawings that were getting conte crayon dust on everything and there was no good reason to keep them. I hope tonight I don't wake up in a sweat thinking I made a mistake throwing out work. I don't even let students throw work out in front of me. It breaks my heart! I ask them to take their work home to show someone before recycling.

When I first graduated from college, I dreamed of owning a flat file to store my precious pieces. I suppose I still do, but the reality is they're wicked expensive, as we'd say up here in New England, and I don't have the space. Have you ever tried to move a flat file? I bought one second hand for my last school and I was very thankful that we splurged for a mover. That thing was heavy!

Anyway, do you have work that you store at home? If it's not on display, what do you do with it? How do you decide what to keep? Then, if you get to make your own work, what do you do with it? Do you sell it?

I should also give credit to the picture: this 18x24 watercolor was done by a junior I had while student teaching.


  1. I haven't discovered the magical solution to this problem yet. I try to display what I can at home or at school, but I don't have a lot of wall space. Then there's all my work from life drawing, which I loved, but really, what do I do with not-school-appropriate work? I haven't thrown out much at all. My 2D stuff is still mostly in portfolios on the top shelf in our Art/laundry room. I have a sculpture at my parents' house that I really don't know what to do with and I can't make myself throw it away. I think I'm going to take a picture of it to post on Facebook saying "free to a good home".

  2. I think this is a problem for all artists! I have a few pieces I've done hanging in my apartment, and my mom's stated a sort of basement gallery in her home with pieces that my siblings and I have done. I've got two big portfolios of artwork (from when I was like, 6 through to college) in my old bedroom at my parent's house. Storing artwork is rough. I'd love to start up an Etsy shop but I always get sad when I think about selling/giving away a piece.

  3. I *had* a ton of stuff from college, but I stupidly stored it in the garage in a portfolio and they all got RUINED from water damage. I was so mad. Stuff I have now is hanging on the walls or in stacks in the basement.

  4. It doesn't get easier as you get older; you just accumulate more. I like to do large artwork, which makes it even harder. And then of course there's the problem of storing that 5' long dragon with a 5' wingspan.

  5. Thank you everyone for stopping by and posting comments! I love it!
    I'm glad to hear that I am not the only one who has art storage issues. I will just keep dreaming of a big house with a barn that I can convert into a studio (and storage space!). In the mean time, I will keep shoving art under my bed.