Since last summer when it arrived, I was chasing my tail with ideas for this project. Three days before the deadline I declared it finished and posted it off to its new home in Brooklyn Art Library.
You might remember my first ‘best laid’ plans disintegrated along with the pages of this book on contact with watercolor.
Having decided to rebind the book in delicious watercolor paper I went off track from my plan and ended up making a bunch of pretty doodles in watercolor, that were fun to make but missed the point of what I wanted to make, and the rebound book sat on my desk for a while in a state of finished-but-no-finished.
Something didn’t feel right.
I couldn’t get myself to film a flip through until when I finally did the edit went all catawompus. I was standing in my own way to package it up to post, to take those last steps.
It felt too mimsy and not very Mixy.
I kept coming back to the thought that if this is going into a collection that can be seen by anyone and possibly by no-one. In a library of + 36,000 books it should, nonetheless, be representative of what I am.
It should be more me.
A little over a week before the deadline to post it off I was awoken by vivid dreams telling me to begin again: Go back to my first idea. Do it now.
I got up that morning and tore out the fancy watercolor paper pages.
For reasons unknown to me up until then I’d kept those first pages. The original paper with holes where the paint seeped through, with scratchy ballpoint lines and un-erasable pencil lines underneath.
The voice in my dream was saying IT’S A SKETCHBOOK. It’s meant to be sketchy. It’s meant to be about ideas, not nice paintings.
I needed to work around the worn through holes, paint over and collage around the layers of ideas. I needed to fill the book with the thoughts and words and shapes that were torrenting around in my head. That’s the point of a sketchbook. That’s what sketching is.
I spent that weekend sat on the floor of my studio, surrounded with collage cuttings and clippings, paints, pens and inks.
I doodled my little heart out.
I sewed in sequins and crocheted page edges.
I rebound the old pages along with drawings I made decades ago. I poured in words that floated through from podcasts and song lyrics as I went.
If you’d like to see a full flip through of these pages, hop onto my email list here for an exclusive preview next week.