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  • Writer's pictureSue Pickering

News, Muse & Inspiration 20: finding the extraordinary in the ordinary

When I first started selling my work as a mixed media artist, I used the following strapline on my business cards and labels:

the art of everyday life

I look for inspiration for my work in the everyday world around me. I'm not interested in grand scenes or important events. I want to capture the extraordinary in the most ordinary of places and things. I love taking photographs of things that I see as I walk around and during February 2024 I set myself the goal of sharing 4 of these photographs on Instagram every day as part of my Art of the Day project.

After spending much of January in my studio making paintings, it was good to have a reason to go outside and look around. In our busy lives it is easy to rush about from place to place, looking down and not noticing what is around us. I made a specific effort to look up and focus in on interesting shapes, lines and textures. When the weather wasn't so great, I looked around my home to find things to photograph. Once you start looking, there are lots of lines, shapes and textures right under our noses!

I digitally manipulated each image by cropping it and removing all of the colour. I also increased the contrast. My aim was to eliminate all of the bright colours that would distract me from the lines and shapes in the images. So, while January's Art of the Day project was all about highly saturated colours, in February there were only variations of tone/value on the greyscale. You can see all 29 sets of images on Instagram.

I have already started using these images in my March Art of the Day pieces. March is all about collage and I have kicked off by creating some digital collages. You can see how my collages develop on my Instagram account.


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