The first part of the theme that we come up with is the "story" of it - what will the body of work be about? For this show, we chose the title "Safe Harbor". As you can probably guess, it is nautical in nature. Not even just the sea, but ideas, objects, and history that surrounds it. You can expect to see a lot of marine motifs in my work - shells, crab claws, coral, scales, as well as more dockside elements such as fishhooks, anchors, baitfish, and flags. We're wanting to more or less be able to represent two worlds of the sea; the world underneath the waterline, and the world that sits right on top, relying on the bounty of the ocean for sustenance.
After we've got our story down, we immediately go into picky designer mode and come up with a color palette that will govern the entire show. If I'm making more than 3 pieces at any given time, I pretty much always choose a palette for the work. I feel so much more comfortable working within color parameters; even if a piece does not specifically fit into the story of the rest of the work, it will visually harmonize if it fits within the color scheme. This is important when we need to fill an entire gallery.
Now that we've defined these things, it's time to get to work! There are patterns to be cut, faces to be sculpted, and mermaids to design. More sneak peeks to come, as there is so much more left to do!