The following is an article written by long time FolioLink client, Maria Carolina Ramirez. She provides insight into her own creative journey, and how she transitioned from sculpture, to painting and ultimately to paper. Finding your own artistic medium may take time, years in fact, and the ability to remain open to new processes is important.
Finding My Creative Freedom Through Paper
I assume everyone has a different path to finding their creative freedom. By this, I mean that moment when you find your voice or style and it feels just right… Sounds esoteric but I have no better way to describe it. Let me share with you how I got to find mine.
My first serious encounter with art was through sculpture. I had the chance to study with a wonderful master in Spain called Santiago de Santiago. I loved working with clay but it was hard to continue due to the need for space and tools. I transitioned to painting and that was my main medium for a good 12 years until I discovered the magic of paper. It all started while attending an exhibit featuring the art of Hilla Rebay at the Guggenheim in NY. As I was browsing the galleries I found her collages: beautiful abstract pieces that mixed watercolor and paper. I was so amazed by her work that, soon after, I got myself some interesting papers, an x-acto knife and glue. Drawing with a blade felt very natural to me and I loved how I could use color, texture and add dimension to my work. I was inventing my own process and enjoying every bit of it. I had a traditional art education, which is a great foundation but I felt a bit restricted by how certain things were suppose to be done. However, since I was figuring out the paper collages in my own terms, I found a freedom I had not experienced before. I was able to play, have fun, explore, imagine and create my own little world.
I have been creating paper collages for at least 8 years. More recently, I was able to combine two of my passions: paper collages and jewelry. I create tiny collages, that I like to call “micro-collages”, by layering paper that I then encapsulate in glaze and glass to turn into pendants, creating wearable art.
For many years I felt the pressure to fit somewhere, to chose one technique or a subject and it felt restrictive. However I now feel that I can express and create whatever I want. My paper work gave me the wings to fly and it all came out of one encounter with the legacy of an unknown but great artist. Each artist has his or her journey. For those that are starting: learn, play, enjoy the ride and if it feels right, follow your gut!