Pattern Making and Shape Shifting


At the beginning of this year I had six weeks off work and was able to immerse myself in the finishing of a writing project and my art.
My creative regime tends to be skittish and hyperkinetic. An ideal day includes intense bursts of writing, several hours of art, gardening, the occasional foray into minor domestic tasks, a constitutional walk and photography to fill in any gaps.
Having more time than usual and being a restless soul who constantly craves new stimulus, I helped out several people I knew by writing them bio’s and necessary blurb, and creating a blog for a friend’s shop. I didn’t get paid for this but loved doing it.
Simply enough I find words exhilarating. I thrive on the challenge of rearranging language and structure to convey different intent and identity.
A little like a puzzle where the words are components that can be arranged to create different worlds.
For me, everything is a pattern. I think and see in curves, colours and multi dimensions rather than in linear or flat terms.
When I was young and very shy and socially inept, I would closely watch people’s behaviour to try to understand right rules of conduct and perhaps find a way to fit in. This admittedly, was a bit of a disaster as individuals aren’t particularly logical, and until I learned this, I had periods of depression and anxiety trying to understand why people acted the way they did. I did discover however that groups who centre around certain occupations or lifestyles did behave relatively predictably and as I drifted into fringe societies built around drug or alcohol use or certain types of spirituality, I was able to fit in more easily.
My art work is also very much about patterns. There is the soothing repetition of multi layered bead work, the fascination of playing with camouflage techniques to create depth and subterfuge, the joy of creating movement that makes the life that I see inherent in everything, visible to others.
Interestingly enough I don’t do jigsaw puzzles and whilst I’m comfortable with computers, they don’t interest me.
Geometry doesn’t press my buttons and I wasn’t particularly good at mathematics at school until I studied the subject at a higher level and it became more abstract.
I can’t tell the difference between left and right, am still unable to tell the time on a conventional clock and driving a car or riding a bike are skills I have never been able to master.
Straight lines and boxes make no sense to me unless I pull them into three-d shapes which I find great fun, but not joyful in the way I find curves, which are limitless and filled with potential, movement and adventure.
Patterns hold a way of communicating that to a degree I understand and have control over. I learn from them and find them stimulating and exciting. Falling into them is like drifting into a lullaby that is the antithesis of this crazy mundane world.

Above Image- Clobster Servitor created by Charlotte Rodgers, photographed by Gerard Hutton.


About charlottejane2002

Author of 'P is for Prostitution', 'The Bloody Sacrifice' and co-editor of 'A Contemporary Western Book of the Dead' which are all published by Mandrake of Oxford. Italian publisher Roberto Migliussi has recently released 'The Sky is a Gateway, Not a Ceiling', a book of Charlotte's collected essays printed alongside images of his own art work. Charlotte is also an artist who creates spiritually directed art works from road kill and found objects. She has had her written work printed in anthologies and various magazines and on line publications and has given presentations at many events and institutions including Edinburgh University and Brooklyn's 'Museum of Morbid Anatomy'. Her art work has been exhibited widely including at London's Chelsea Gallery and The Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institute, and is soon to be shown in New York.
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