Creativity has deep roots in questioning the status quo. Creativity is comfortable with innovation and risk. In other words, creativity rarely travels a well-lit path to a guaranteed outcome. Quinn McDonald named her business QuinnCreative because she helps creative people communicate their ideas clearly and live a creatively inspired life with satisfaction and enthusiasm.
I met Quinn through her blog and became one of the regular commenters. I felt so at home there! Deep discussions, silly ones, past, present and future, Inner Critics, all types of themes are talked about there, always with grace and respect.
Q: The day you stepped into your creative space for the first time, did you already know how you wanted your studio to look like or did the design evolve from the actual space?
A: Creativity was a part of my life early on, before there was a “creative space.” It was just my bedroom, which was also the only way to get to the garage or to my brothers’ bedroom. Without privacy, I craved alone time. I covered an old cigar box with shelf paper (contact paper), padded the lid with paper napkins, and put my tools and a notebook into it. I hid it behind the books in my bookshelf. It was my first journal for writing and sketching.
Since then, any space I have morphs into what I need at the moment. A flat worktable, good lighting, and enough space to spread out my collage papers and I’m set.
Egg: Often, I photograph things that create ideas for writing or images. I see photos as metaphors for daily life. This one, for example, shows two identical eggs. They look different because the sun lights them up differently. That’s also true of ideas, people, and experiences. How we see people or ideas depends on how our experiences light them up.
Q: After the work is done, do you clean up after each piece, after each day or whenever you can´t find the table any more?
A: What a great question! I discovered early on that I work where and when I can. Because most of my life is spent on the road or in an airplane, empty space scared me. I always leave a project out, incomplete, so that whenever I have time to work, it’s waiting for me. OK, so sometimes that means I can’t find the desktop anymore. Then it’s time to clean up.
Heart: This collage made with Monsoon Papers is a new approach. It’s spontaneous. I cut with scissors and see what happens. It’s expressive work and always surprising and interesting to see the result. I cut hearts out of both of the figures and then placed one heart in the spot of another and left the first blank. People can fill in meaning according to their own experience.
Q: Which is your best time of the day to create?
A: Late at night or early in the morning. Rarely during the middle of the day, because it’s the time to get business done.
Pear: Experimenting with color is creative joy. I’ve never studied watercolor, but I love the transparency and accidental effects. A friend once told me, “Thank goodness I never studied watercolor, it would have prevented me from learning by experimenting.” I agree, but I still will study watercolor someday.
Q: Music or silence?
A: Silence. Music is something to be listened to and appreciated, but not background for my work. If I’m cleaning or doing repetitive work (packing or addressing cards, sorting papers, or culling materials) I listen to audiobooks.
Q: Which is your next project?
A: I’m starting another book. It’s not an art book, like the two others, so I’ll be making art separately to keep myself balanced and grounded. I’m exploring expressive, abstract collage with words added. It’s challenging not to use the words to explain the abstract art.
Raven: This collage is made by sketching the bird, then cutting out letters in different sizes and weights from books that are going to be shredded. The letters often form words and phrases about the subject. It requires concentration and focus, and the work is slow and painstaking. Notice the script R that forms his shoulder. It took a while to find it, and the piece would be different without it.
Q: Where can we find you on line?
Quinn´s books: Inner Hero Creative Journal and Raw Art Journaling: http://quinncreative.com/quinns-books/