The art I create starts with a spark of inspiration. I feel an impulse towards an idea, a vision or a concept. Then, a deep primal force fills my being and I am compelled to transform my inspired ideas into reality.
Birds have always been a great source of inspiration for me. My first pet was a budgie named Star, and I’ve always felt birds were sending me messages from other realms. I had a vision of creating something that would allow me to merge more fully with the heart of a bird. I wanted to feel its pulse and rhythm. Bodypainting seemed like the best way to realize this idea by symbolically integrating me with a bird.
There are always some creative challenges to be faced in the process of realizing an inspired idea. When it came to bodypainting me as a bird there were a list of questions that needed to be answered in order to put this project in motion:
- Who could body paint me?
- Who could photograph me?
- What kind of bird would it be?
- How would it actually work?
- Was there anything I would have to do to prepare my body, mind, and spirit to merge with the bird?
The first step was gathering the team that could help realize this vision. I approached Sue Upton, makeup artist and bodypainter extraordinaire, to bodypaint me. I asked photographer Kevin Thom to photograph me. Once the team was confirmed we went to work figuring out the composition for the shoot and clarifying the bird style and angle. We explored a number of different versions until we finally landed on the look and feel that worked.
Although I’m a painter myself, I wanted Sue to paint the bird because it needed to merge effectively with the bodypainting. Sue created a life-size bird backdrop for the bodypainting.
Here is Sue busy at work finalizing details for the backdrop right before the actually bodypainting was to begin. My cat Aslan was keeping an eye on everything.
Creating this vision was a 2 day job!
Although some moments were a bit grueling, the whole piece came together beautifully. Each time I look at it I feel I receive new insights and messages. One of the biggest things I learned from merging with this bird is that my own mind must be clear in order to hear the pulse of the birds love. Birds are able to fly because their inner structure is light. Placing my head in the heart of the bird, showed me how my thoughts must be filled with lightness if I am to truly take flight.
‘Laüra Hollick as Magenta Bird’. Photographed by Kevin Thom. Painting, make-up and bodypainting by Sue Upton.
This creation is one of dozens of pieces featured in my Magenta Gallery.
View more inspired images that highlight the color magenta in my Magenta Gallery.
I’d love to hear what you think about my Magenta Bird creation!
What messages or insights do you feel when you connect with this image?
Post your thoughts below and circulate the inspiration by sharing with your friends.