Where are you at with the whole ‘blank canvas’ of your life thing?
Given that we can have the power to change everything in our lives moment to moment, the present is a continuous blank canvas for our future – or if you prefer, (and today I do) a blank sheet of paper.
Quite suddenly the blank piece of paper becomes a metaphor for your life.
I admit to occasionally feeling intimidated by blank white paper. Especially if it’s fancy laid paper, watermarked, letterhead or handmade paper.
On analysis, I realise this happens when I’m feeling either fearful, creatively overwhelmed/bottle-necked or remembering that a tree died to make that beautiful blank, smooth whiteness.
How can you dare break the serene silence of whiteness if you don’t feel you can make the paper any more lovely that it already is?
Strangely, my dumbness is overcome by A2 and A1 pads of paper. I LOVE those. With their maxi size and lots of leaves, I feel giddy with freedom. I always use huge pads for mind-mapping and big ideas, (of course).
When I’m feeling confident, filled with prosperity consciousness and I am holding a pen I like to write with and there’s a sentence in my mind that must be captured and contained on a sheet of A4 paper, not via my computer keyboard, I thrill to the blankness.
I guess a lot of people don’t take much notice of a blank piece of paper. It’s the same with most things we use every day, yet these tiny things can be incisively indicative of our general attitude. As humans, the potential of tiny things tends to get overlooked as we turn our heads to the glitzy sparkly BIG thing over there, we can’t help ourselves.
But wait! To redeem us all there is at least one, rare individual who is divinely inspired by blank A4 paper. Peter Callesen not only turns something 2D into something 3D, he inspires us all by creating delicate majesty with his imagination, A4 paper, glue and a blade. He also has these glorious words to say about it all:
“I find the A4 sheet of paper interesting to work with, because it is probably the most common and consumed media and format for carrying information today, and in that sense it is something very loaded. This means that we rarely notice the actual materiality of the A4 paper.
“By removing all the information and starting from scratch using the blank white 80gsm A4 paper as a base for my creations, I feel that I have found a material which we all are able to relate to, and at the same time is non-loaded and neutral and therefore easier to fill with different meanings. The thin white paper also gives the paper sculptures a fragility which underlines the tragic and romantic theme of the works.”
Ah, Peter, you are SO very fine!
Thank you for demonstrating how something humble, something ordinary like a blank piece of paper, can become remarkably extraordinary. Just like us.
Images borrowed from Peter Callesen.