A Blank Canvas

A Blank Canvas

Known for her abstract line drawings and nude portraits, BC-based Artist Tori Swanson is no stranger to things au naturale. With a canvas-like look crafted from completely raw cotton, we featured the artist in her element, wearing our Undyed Collection.

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“My artistic career started with nude portraits. During my first year 
of university and at art school, I was definitely drawn to figure drawing, and I was naturally good at it. Years later, when I was ill with anorexia, 
art healed my life. I found myself dropping into figure drawing classes whenever I could. Mostly because I was so inspired by the bravery 
of the model, to pose nude while the students would be hyper-focused on their body, and the confidence needed to stand there and be eyed and transcribed in their own style. The models have to trust the artist.”

“For a long time, I felt intimidated by a blank canvas, because I couldn’t ‘perfectly’ replicate what I saw in my mind onto the primed canvas. I couldn’t let go of my perfectionism. It took a long time to develop that trust, and not take what I saw so seriously. Instead, using it as a guide, and muse, I allow my personal style to show off in the two-dimensional world.”

“I read the book, ‘The War of Art’ by Steven Pressfield, and he interviewed a creative and asked him if he creates when he is inspired or on schedule. The interviewee went on to describe his creative flow and that he only creates when he’s inspired, but inspiration hits every day starting at 9 am.

“I loved this quote because it authentically represents our relationship to our creativity and inspiration. Like muscle memory, creativity is available to everyone, as long as we’re willing to work at it.”

“I guess the blank space [in my artwork] is just representative of giving ourselves permission to take up space, without having to fill it with ‘stuff’ or cover ourselves up. There is space all around us, have you ever noticed that? Do you take advantage of it? Do you give yourself space during the day to do what you want and be with yourself?”

“Less is more, and I find Kotn products really easy to interchange and mix and match, which is crucial for when I go travelling for shows and exhibits overseas. My favourite piece we shot in was the jacket, it was so soft, and easy to throw on. The pants were stretchy and airy, a perfect canvas to spill my paint and make it my own.”

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