Perhaps it is because I was raised partly in the gentle glow of PBS, but from a very young age, I have felt compelled to document my life and view on the world. I started keeping a diary around age 11 after watching a Ken Burns documentary on the American Civil War. I was struck by how much of the documentary came from various diaries of the time. Diaries are such quiet, unassuming pieces of history and I have found that keeping a diary for years to be a very healthful pursuit.
There are many benefits to an artist willing to put in the additional work of keeping a record of their work and progress, the first of which is encouragement. It is so easy for me to lose sight of how I have progressed in my skill, but looking back at pictures of earlier work it’s easy to see how dedication can pay off. It was only in February of last year that I first got the idea to try making a corset and as of this writing I am about to finish my second. Looking back at old work can be a source of inspiration as well. I find it fascinating to try and retrace the train of thought that ties together two seemingly unrelated works. Often in this retracing, I am reminded of a forgotten interest and a whole new world of inspiration can open up before me. However, I try not to wallow too much in past accomplishments, no matter how well done a piece is, its only use to me now is a stepping stone towards further achievement.
As an artist, I find that nothing is ever truly finished, and you can never tell where you will go next if you only allow yourself to give in to the gentle tug of curiosity. Looking back at where I’ve been is more interesting than thinking about where I ought to be.