It’s easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission

Remember when my puppy dog Misiu collaborated with me? Well, he’s not the only one in my family who likes to contribute to my work. Here’s a story in honor of my mom’s birthday today :)

I’ll start off by saying that I get pretty serious about my paper. I have two whole bins of different handmade papers at my studio, as well as multiple rolls of printmaking, watercolor and drawing papers. Not to mention the different pads of paper that I am hoarding :) I love experimenting with different papers, I love playing with collage, I love the different textures, smells and how they all have different qualities that work with specific materials. I am also very specific about my edges. I love deckle edges and always, always, always rip my paper instead of cutting. There’s just something so much more appealing to me about a deckle or ripped edge versus a cut one. I think it also works with my style, the clean cut edge would stand out quite a bit in my controlled mess. Also, when the pieces are matted and framed, the edges don’t show. So, really it doesn’t matter, yes, I know. But I know they’re under there! :)

Having said all that, a couple years ago, when I was studying abroad in Madrid, I was talking on the phone with my mom. I don’t remember what we were talking about specifically, but I’m sure it had to do with the fact that travel life is a thousand times more fun than real life. Anyway, as we were talking, my mom brought up this piece:

photo 4 (1)This is an older piece, one that I had completed junior or senior year of high school and at that point really had no use for. She asked if she could frame it. I had always been very adamant about my work not being displayed at my house (which is probably why she waited until I was out of the country to tackle this particular project), so I was very happy she knew to ask instead of just taking it and because she asked so nicely, I agreed to let her have this one piece. (High school and early college Angelika was very adamant about not having any of my artwork displayed at my house. As far as I was concerned, the safest and best place for the work was under my bed…) And then, my mom asked me the most ridiculous question: “Oh, and you wouldn’t mind if I just trim it down a bit so that it will fit in the frame, right?” I had to laugh at that. Of course I minded, I told her. There is no way in hell I would be ok with anything getting trimmed off. And then in quite typical ‘It’s easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission’ fashion, she followed it up with, “Oh… because I may have already trimmed the bottom a little bit.” (You can see the horrendous damage done by comparing the vertical deckle edge to that hideous cut bottom edge):

photo 1 (2)

Of course, when I heard that my mom had been hacking away at my artwork (or at least it seemed that way in the moment) sent me off on an angry (and quite dramatic and exaggerated) rant about how much money I spent to have that specific edge on the paper and how I will now never be able to recover it and how she ruined the piece. I felt pretty awful afterwards, but only after a couple days of wallowing in my anger, something my roommate at the time can attest to. After that, I forbid my mother from going near my work and haven’t allowed her to hang up anything since. And yes, I realize she’s just proud of what I do and wants to display it and I love that she wants to do that and could not ask for a better support system. So this year, I’m ready to stop acting slightly crazy and decided to gift this ruined (just kidding, I know it’s not ruined… kind of) portrait of my little sister, as well as another piece of my siblings, (completely matted and framed, so there’s no need for scissors) to my mom for her birthday :)

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2 Responses to It’s easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission

  1. Katarzyna says:

    Wish your mom a happy birthday for me!

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