Friday, December 7, 2012

Classy McGraceful Artist Statement

Classy McGraceful (aka Jill Gillespie)

The Drawings

I’m crazy. I’m Type-A to the max, and I strive for unrealistic amounts of perfection in myself. A few years back, a communication snafu sent me over the edge. I fell to the floor and sobbed and pulled my hair and screamed until all the feelings were gone. It was the worst I had felt about myself in a really long time. Yes, mostly because I misunderstood some plans.

I picked myself up and decided that I need to stop taking myself so seriously. Existence is crazy, people aren’t mind readers, I might be insane. OK. I turned to exploring my personality and the types of things that drive me ape-shit crazy, and I learned to laugh at myself. I opened a sketchbook and just started drawing. I set my perfectionist nature neatly aside and allowed myself to tell stories and just...suck at something. I explore how my brain makes me view myself sometimes, and how I then relate to others. It helps me laugh, and I think it helps the people I love understand me better. It turns out we’re all a little crazy. And that’s OK. New in 2018! Audio Companion!

The Hats

My perfectionism also makes me really impatient. I want a creative patient artist brain nownownow, and I just don’t have it. I’ll try something, but if I’m not immediately producing something awesome, I give up. In the midst of everything, I also went through a weight-loss journey. I lost over 100 lbs after I moved to Kansas City. While I had a new body, I kept my old brain. I always look for things to do to keep me occupied so I’ll stay out of the kitchen at night.

A couple years back, I received a gift card to a craft store and stumbled on these circle knitting looms. The packaging told me I could make stocking caps in a few easy steps, and I didn’t have to learn how to knit well. Whoa. I bought those looms and some yarn, and when I got home that night, I plopped in the middle of the hallway and just started ‘knitting’ until I had a hat. I pretty much haven’t stopped. I decided that I would try to knit a hat for every pound I lost and give them away. People need to be warm, I need to be out of the kitchen. Win-win.

Thank you to Ryan, Lauren, and Melanie for being my hat-making team and for keeping me company.

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