gianna nicole
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the art of movement | process

Early last year I took my first formal art class and began to learn some basic design principles. We were given an assignment to gather images about the relationship between geometric and organic elements. Of course, I used this as an excuse to plan a shoot, looking for backdrops that contained sharper lines and posing a figure in front of them. This is when I got to know the incredible friend and talented artist pictured below. Our conversations on creativity and faith started here and have continued ever since! 

I absolutely love Springtime. The warmer weather (which will hopefully arrive soon) and sense of renewal had always given my mood an extra boost. This is also when all of the Senior Art and Communication majors begin to release the creative projects that they've been working on. Seeing how their ideas evolve from concept to scale, and how each individual approaches the creative process differently, fascinates me. Almost two years later from when the above image was taken, I had the honor of documenting Terry's process of creating "The Art of Movement", a mixed media display of art and dance captured on paper and in video. These stills were taken after a few hours of filming, documenting the dance that is the creative process. 

It’s hard being type-a and creative. I can’t plan my creative outbursts, my desire to make. I almost must submit to them. As I am learning more about the involvement of the Holy Spirit in my creative process I have become less controlling. My awareness of beauty and the overwhelming rush of ideas, projects, and images that I experience is actually quite painful. I am afraid of losing them and become disillusioned into believing that I can control them and place them on a timeline. If I don't have time or space to record them, or if I can't put them into words then I grow frustrated. However, this morning I read an article called The Holy Spirit and the Arts that reminded me of the beauty of my personality types that are seemingly at odds. 

The article endorsed “an organic approach that emphasizes union with the Savior as the source and sustaining influence of our creative work”. My relationship with these random (and sometimes unfortunately timed) creative impulses must be organic, raw, and undomesticated. The Holy Spirit is not a tool or a lackey that I consult when lost or overwhelmed. It requires my obedience and submission, but it is also active, wild, and incredibly thrilling. The "mechanistic" approach simply will not do. He relates this to John 15, and the organic union of the Vine to its branches.

Terry navigates this process extremely well, living into the mystery and trusting during each step. 

Art has the tendency to be viewed in a rather topical manner. When one wanders through a museum or gallery, they have often been spared an incredible (yet grueling) piece of the neatly framed canvases that adorn the walls; the creative process. Some, upon viewing an abstract piece, deeply appreciate the artists choice and use of color and composition, however others may scoff, stating that the piece is a useless mess that required a overly simplistic method. This example is not centered around the taste of the individual, but around ones understanding of the creative process and the artist, as well as the necessity for creative expression and the completion of the artist's aesthetic vision. 

This exhibition bears all- revealing themes of tension, rhythms of making, and as Terry puts it "the primal need to create". It's a must see!

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