Sunday, November 7, 2010

Where do you draw your inspiration for the designs from?

Sun Flower
Originally uploaded by la_v_i_k_a

I have a flickr friend to thank for this question. It's something I should probably address more frequently.

Where do I get my inspiration?

I do a lot of reading with my eyes, the text is secondary.

Within this photo are designs inspired by: bricklayers' paving patterns, the repetition of Talavera tile designs, Asian family crests, Islamic iron screens, and Japanese etegami.

I chose a palette from Central Asia, from Islamic tile work, almost twenty years ago, after visiting Kazakhstan. I stray from it in places, but those colors are still at the core of my work, appearing again and again. Carpets from the region also influenced me. When I struggle with reds, I am always thinking of the wrestling with materials that faced the region's carpet-makers, who arrived at deep to fading watermelon, and reds that leaned toward violet, using madder and various insect products. Now, we both struggle with modern reds so potent they are unnatural.

Considering more recent events, I'll admit it's curious that my inspiration comes primarily from this region. But, I grew up near Saratoga Race Track, a land of horses. An elementary school infatuation with dinosaurs, combined with the presence of horses, led to an interest in Mongolia, home to some of the earliest horses. My interest in the region took off from there, and has never left me.

So, at root, maybe my biggest inspiration is having an elementary school girl's curiosity.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Originally uploaded by la_v_i_k_a

I've made some lovely art over the years, but none so lovely as that given to me.