Flourish by Markus Raetz
In the latest "Three Minute Egg" on the Crown Point Press Magical Secrets web site, Kathan Brown introduces us to the prints of Markus Raetz, and she frames the discussion of his work by talking about two types of artists, Searchers and Planners. Searchers are artists who work from experience. They love to explore materials and experiment to see what happens. Planners work from an idea, choosing materials and techniques in service of the concept.
I immediately identified myself as a Planner, and in the video Brown calls Raetz a Planner, too. She tells a story about the print shown above and points out that knowing the story -- that this print was created immediately after the September 11 attacks -- can enhance the artwork for a viewer. I often worry about that myself, as sometimes the idea I'm working from isn't obvious. But Raetz says something interesting. He says that he uses his subject matter only for himself, as a way for him to get into the work himself, and that it doesn't matter if the viewer knows the story or not. I think that may be true -- that just because I'm attached to my own idea doesn't mean that a viewer needs to be.
At any rate, I'm a planner who wants to become more of a Searcher. I always begin with a concept; I can't seem to help doing that. But if I hold too tightly to a plan, I find that the execution can become boring for me. Lately I'm working on keeping my plans loose and experimenting more as I go along, allowing the image to evolve even as I try to stay close to my original intention.
How do you work? Are you a Searcher or a Planner? Do Planners always envy Searchers and vice versa?