A Flower For Your Thoughts
My SEA project ended up being a real learning experience for me. At first I was really nervous about talking to a bunch of strangers about Future Bear and the environment but I actually really enjoyed myself. I ended up making adjustments to my project before I performed it. Originally, I had planned to fold my screen printing cars into notes to hand out but I decided instead to leave them unfolded because the paper was pretty thick. I also decided that instead of having them write a note that I would give back to someone else I would give them my note and them have them write theirs on a flower cutout which is were the title of my project some from.
Future Bear help me launch my conversations and gave me a frame on which to based the discussions that I had with my participants. During my project I gave out two double sided screen printed images to each person. One print had a blooming tree and the other had a poem/quote and a fact about how we are hurting our environment. There were 6 different poem, quote, and fact combinations that I handed out. In addition, while the people were writing the notes I would talk to them about Future Bear and the environment. After the conversation they gave me back a flower-shaped note saying what they loved, appreciated, or wished was different about the environment.
This project made me realize that I don’t just have to make art to please myself, but to also do something for the world I live on; without it I would not have resources to make any of these things. One thing that I realized during my project is that people are always rushing around and it was initially difficult to get people to stop for a moment. The interesting thing was that when they stopped to participate they would also look around at all of the beautiful nature at Lake Eola and really think about what they liked about it. It was very satisfying to see and it made me feel like my art and what I was doing mattered. As a result, i feel like it is something that I definitely would like to do again and the people I talk to were asking me if I did this all the time of if I had a Facebook page they could join, so I felt like it was well receive.
I feel like the strongest elements of my project were conversation and collaboration. A lot of the performance was just talking to people and informing them while giving them something in exchange for listening and responding. The collaboration potion of my project was the flowers. By contributing their ideas to the project they became a part of the artwork.
If I did my project again there are three things I would do, I would hand out different images so that everyone does not get the same one and print more. I would also perform the project for more days. It was fine this time because I handed out all of my prints, but next time I would like to visit other parks and outdoor areas to reach more people.
Out of all of the different things in the mission statement, I felt like my project help me embody social responsibility and environmental stewardship. My project allowed me to acknowledge my responsibility as a citizen of the world, and it also gave me more awareness in regards to my own carbon footprint and how I effect the environment.