ever feel boxed in?

Emerging artist, Tom O’Donohoe on wood, hooks, and typewriter ribbons.

I received an email from Fly No Filter‘s artistic director Lucy, asking me to measure up the toy box, as she knew she could fit in it. Words of advice from past members of eOTo, don’t worry if it makes no sense, don’t question it, whispered to me. The email continued, I was to measure up the box with the extra blankets and duvets in my room and to see if I could fit inside. Lucy said if I can fit in it, then so could she, probably.

I am on the side lines of Fly No Filters, Only When Its Feathers are Grown R&D, standing with my colleague Sarah.  We are integral support to the project, researching and sourcing materials, interviewing company artists, and also learning from each other.  We haven’t remained on the safe edges though as we take part in each section of the creative process.  From company classes and woodland hideaways to campfire building and storytelling.  I quickly discovered that I needed an open mind and energetic attitude for this experience so when looking at the box in my room, I was thinking there is no way I’m going to fit in there, but after taking out the blankets and duvets I was thinking maybe I could.  So, pulling the box out and slowly sliding myself into it I managed to fit but with my legs sticking up in the air, thinking to myself I don’t think this would work out for the project.

The concept of being boxed in, is for me where you are trapped in a small section of your own mind, where you could be over thinking things or letting things that people say get to you. This can make you feel small, which makes you hide away in that little corner of your mind and shut yourself off from everyone else. But also, you can feel boxed in at work when you have all these amazing ideas, but your boss or manager won’t listen to you as they want to keep you exactly where you are. The research and development for Only When Its Feathers are Grown dosen’t make me feel boxed in as my artistic director and company members want to listen to my ideas as they value my input, and how it could make the project better, or take it into the next stage of development.

Then I try to get out of the box, but I can’t. I am stuck in this box and there was no one else in the house to help me so I thought I was going to be there for a while. I eventually managed to get out by holding onto both sides and having my fingers crushed by the box lid as the chain connecting the lid to the box was being pushed down by my legs as I was pushing upwards to get out. When I was out and free I just thought to myself, well that was fun.”

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