Accidental Smoothie: Patterns, Plants & Art!

Words by
Karina Sharpe
Images by
Karina Sharpe
| December 16, 2015

I have a big interest in patterns – in their makings and in their breakings, in how they form themselves into tangible rhythms and transmute themselves, slyly, into habits. How they can govern entire life spans, and how they can be passed down through generations. I’ve been observing patterns in a dedicated manner for the last 12 months: patterns in people, patterns in plants and patterns in art.

'Accidental Smoothie'

There is a pattern I’ve found in the act of creating. It certainly occurred during the act of making these plant patterns, just as it occurred in the project before them, and I now expect will occur in the project that follows. It is a pattern that begins with a vision, and is followed by the pure perfect joy in the imaginings of turning the vision into something real. The actual act of manifesting however, can feel more like a pilgrimage trodden to the soundtrack of courage, devotion and self-doubt.

I have decided that this part of the pattern can sometimes feel most akin to standing near-naked on the shore while you let the wind whip the top of a sand dune across your skin. You voluntarily get a bit raw.  And perhaps you lose your breath. Luckily, hopefully, you have clothed yourself in the sanctuary of that first vision – of an art, or idea, that feels real enough to be already-made, already in existence – except for the act of making it.

So as I stand in the midst of the current sand storm, on the pilgrimage to making the artwork in this series called ‘Accidental Smoothie’, it occurs to me that my creative pattern may have parallels with those in the plant world.

My art certainly does not appear overnight, and nor does the fruit I am working with. In fact, the fruit tree must go through a number of wins and losses on its journey from conception to fruition.

It must make its branch elements, and then the flower buds. The flowers must be willing to be vulnerable, to open themselves to the elements and allow bugs to crawl on them. And then, courageously, the flowers must be prepared to let themselves go, because only in their wake can the fruit begin to grow. I realise it is a combination of preparedness, voluntary vulnerability and faithful courage that is in governess. I recognise I have witnessed it in the mango, in the banana, in the grape.

And now I have witnessed it in myself.

'The Banquet'
'Garden Party'
'The Foraged'
'Quilted Sand Dune'