Sometimes I start a carving project by sketching; at other times I may draw a few sketches to support a project that is already in work. Sometimes I do a bit of both! My second Mrs. Beetle carving was well under way on a block of Lirio laundry soap before I sketched anything. The sketches can consolidate my ideas and keep me focused when I am not carving.
I also want to create a finished art work that will incorporate multiple beetles, however I did not have any clear vision or concept of what that might look like until I did some doodling. Here is one of my sketches to support beetle carving, and another one that may help me create a finished artwork.
Last night, sketching, I may have come up with my plan:
I think many of my beetles will be installed in one or more “specimen drawers”! Why it has taken me this long to come to this idea, I really don’t know: it seems so obvious. I have built “museum drawers” before now, though these were archeological rather than botanical. So I have a plan, and I am excited, but a long way from having a sufficient collection of beetles!
I enjoy assembling, and I have created several art assembly pieces in old drawers, or in shallow wooden boxes that I think of the same way. When I am experimenting, I create many pieces and parts: items that don’t really stand alone as much more than amusements. But sometimes these parts created separately come together and create the kind of magic I want from my artwork.
When small pieces that I have created with care, even treasured for quite some time, eventually do become part a greater whole, it is immensely satisfying. I really enjoy the process of preparing an artwork from many parts. And so far, I am usually pleased with the results.
I am especially fond of the dimensional work I have assembled in drawers, which requires a variety of skills. It can take time to find just the right pieces to create the odd scenes that fit my vision. I may need to alter or repair found drawers and boxes. Sometimes I add lights, which always complicates the process, and getting the final finish details can take time and patience. But I find it all very satisfying.