The Blank Page

  (First published on Viewfinders on February 3rd 2023)

Okay, I’ll come clean, I’m one of those people who has a few too many notebooks and a thing for stationery, paper in particular. One of my favourite early memories is finding a ream of paper in a bag from a well-known Dublin city centre stationery shop, on the side of the road, in our far flung city suburb, just before a shower of heavy rain completely destroyed it.

That block of clean crisp white paper was such a departure from my usual art supplies of colouring books and the backs of advertising leaflets that it was a creative shock to the system, with it I had weeks of fun: folding fortune tellers, cutting out chains of people, and helping snowflakes escape from those sheets of paper; it started a lifetime love affair with the stuff.

For me, the blank page offers so much. There are times it becomes the symbol of my frustration and lack of ideas–and all that goes along with creative block…

…and then again it has the ability to be anything from a simple abstract…

…to a spaceship…

…or a cabin in the woods.

The only limit is my imagination and, I must confess, on occasion my building skills.

As a resource it’s there to fold, cut, tear, shred, or mould into something to photograph…

…and with the addition of my lights I can give it presence and place.

The blank page has become a constant as a conduit for both my creativity and frustrations and a staple of my 365 project I started back in 2011, which has seen me take a photo, video, make an animation, or an illustration, every single day. I’m now in my 13th year and haven’t missed a day yet, in part due to the blank page. www.flickr.com/photos/catmacbride/albums

All images available to licence on Stocksy

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