A Year of Seclusion to Develop a Visual Language
I committed myself to one year of work in private without the pressure of sharing, finalizing, or explaining. This timeline made sense for the medium I chose. I needed to learn a variety of new techniques, tools, and materials.
When I began I had a sense of what my goal visual language was, but it took time to actually develop the materials and art objects to look like the images in my mind’s eye. I had chosen to learn a completely new set of sculptural techniques, and I expected it would take some time to bring them together in a coherent fashion. A year of private development proved to be an accurate timeline.
For an artist or writer working in a familiar medium, a year might be too long. It also might be too short, depending on the complexity of the work.
The important concept is: protect the work from outside commentary until it is ready.
Developing a Language: Visual Language, Symbolic Language, etc
This is what might be otherwise called style. It is that ephemeral combination of approaches, words, metaphors, textures, and modes that marks a period of time or a body of work in an artist’s portfolio. It could be visual, semantic, kinesthetic, or auditory.
And, to flesh out this example: it took me about a 1000 hours of work to reach a point where I felt like my visual language was coherent enough to begin sharing.