Some painters transform the sun into a yellow spot, others transform a yellow spot into the sun.
Picasso’s quote comes to my mind when I ponder two drawings by artist and writer Cait Potter. They’re among my favorites, the titles creating a parallel: Her fish is titled No Ordinary Bird, and the bird (displayed later in this article) is No Ordinary Fish.
What caught my eye about Potter’s work were the questions they prompted. Is it a bird, or a dragon? Is it a mix of the two? With art it often isn’t about what a subject is, but the emotion a piece evokes. Cait’s art made me wonder, so I asked about her creative process.
When did you start drawing? Was it an urge you’ve always had lurking, or did it wake up one day?
Start of last year, I was going through some really rough stuff and when I was in the hospital I was really bored and it just kinda clicked. It was what I wanted to do; I stole a few magazines from the trolley and drew all over them. Tracing and copying the faces of the models. I had a sketchbook at home and I got it out as soon as I got home. I just went from there and it’s been a really good outlet. I think I was really just itching to try something new, I wasn’t inspired, I was really down and I’ve always been really visual.
Can you name three things that influence your visual art?
Music, I’m a huge fan of music, I used to play a couple of instruments but now I just do the listening, maybe playin isn’t for me, maybe I’ll pick it back up in a few years. Who knows? I’m content with simply expanding my music taste and supporting local musicians’ atm
Movies, I got told once that I watch too many of them but now, I disagree, I think that movies have helped me become the writer and artist I am today. Rocky horror picture show will probably be one of my all-time favourites, along with Velvet goldmine. I’m a huge fan of b-grade and experimental films, it’s honestly something I want to get into making.
Photography. I love looking at photos, no matter how crap they are, give me experimental photography, give me interesting photos of random things, idc I’m about it.
Are your drawings tied to your writing in any way? Do you ever consider a drawing truly done?
My art is very tied to my writing; I’m often drawing things based off of my writing or vice versa. I don’t really know tbh, I just do both when I’m inspired.
I hate it when drawings are done, you kinda just know when to stop, you just think, yeah this is done, but I get attached to my drawings while I’m drawing them, I hate when I’m done. Style wise, I don’t think a drawing is ever done because I know that if I left it and then came back to it a week later to finish it could be totally different then whatever it was in the beginning. Maybe I’m never finished a drawing, maybe I just get bored and never finish anything.
What advice do you have for someone who wants to draw, but hesitates to try a new art form?
Just do it, even if what you draw is crap. Don’t worry about the outcome enjoy the process, draw cause it feels good to draw not cause you like what you draw.
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Cait Potter is an 18 year old artist, writer and photographer. She is an art student who has written three chapbooks.