Bit Of A Break

I’ve been on a bit of a break. It wasn’t a conscious one, just something that kinda happened. I’m guessing with all the researching on doing prints, test runs, revamping my branding material and finishing up my last drawing, my spirit just said “Chill for a minute.” 

I haven’t been doing anything major, just a few doodles and sketches here and there. In the meantime I’ve got four drawing ideas lined up along with gathered reference material. It amazes me how when I think I can’t possibly come up with anything more something new comes to mind. It reminds me that creativity and the imagination is inexhaustible. But I also keep a log of my ideas just in case something doesn’t come up and one of those four drawing ideas was pulled from that log. 

Outside of that I’ve put aside some time to read, for pleasure, rather than for knowledge and information. I snagged a copy of The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho from my library’s bookstore. I’m slowly making my way through it. I haven’t read a book simply for pleasure in over 20 years. My years of college has me so conditioned to reading to gain information and knowledge that I almost feel guilty about setting aside some time to read for no other purpose than enjoyment. Then again, I kind of feel that way about doing anything that doesn’t have an end goal. I wonder if that’s a cultural thing? I always feel that if I’m not sleeping, my every waking moment should be geared towards serving some meaningful purpose. 

Anyhoo, I’ve also been fiddling around with our container garden. My hubby loves tomatoes so that’s mostly what we’re growing. But we have a few other things like herbs, cucumbers, lettuce, celery and more (see pictures below). I’m most excited about the sweet potatoes and ginger. This is our first time growing them so I’ve got my fingers crossed that everything turns out well. It’s nice being able to just go to your backyard when you want a fresh salad. 😊

Is Size What Really Matters?

Looking at the work of others can be very inspiring. But sometimes it can be discouraging too. You can’t help but think about your own work and do that very thing that you shouldn’t do; compare yourself.  I work on paper. Often small pieces but nothing larger than an 8×10 drawing on smooth Bristol board. Everybody else it seems work on these epic size canvases or drawing sheets. Which leave me wondering, is it really all about size? Is that what makes a work of art more impressive than others? The sheer magnitude of it?

Uh…What Happen To Skill?

Artist – noun

1.  One, such as a painter, sculptor, or writer, who is able by virtue of imagination and talent or skill to create works of aesthetic value, especially in the fine arts.

2.  A person whose work shows exceptional creative ability or skill.  

  As an artist I am very well aware that art is subjective and as the saying goes “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” Yet no matter how objective and open minded I try to be, some things…well, a lot of things, make me scratch my head. But even as an artist I am often very hesitant to say so because there is always that immediate response of “Well, you just don’t understand.” causing me to question my own judgement when I see art that literally looks like something that anyone with a big paintbrush and a bucket of Behr can create yet sells for millions. It’s this style of art that I’m afraid gives the general public the idea that art is easy, frivolous and nonsensical. I feel that in some cases the general public is justified in their thinking. To me, there’s a difference between art and good art and that difference lies in skill, whether that skill is in being able to convey emotion through the use of color or the capability to exquisitely render in great detail the raindrops on leaves. We have tumbled a long way from when we used to marvel at the works of Michelangelo to the above painting by Rothko. Honestly, I lay part of the blame on Duchamp’s “Fountain” and Postmodernism along with the replacement of skill with pure expression. Consider me old fashioned and a traditionalist but I just don’t think that when people view art they should be asking “What is it?” or “What does it mean?” And I don’t think telling them that the artist is expressing a “rigorous attention to formal elements such as color, shape and balance” provides much of a context or explanation to help them understand what they are seeing when what they are looking at is literally a painting of a yellow rectangle and blue rectangle on an eight foot canvas, which sold for $46.5 million dollars. 

“There is too much stuff in society and certainly in the art world that is sanctified garbage. And for various reasons of self-preservation or timidity nobody blurts out the truth.” ~ Ian Roberts Creative Authenticity

Dahlia Prints

I’ve finally completed “Dahlia”, which is now my second available print. I’m still working out the small details to printing but I’m getting there. It’s nice having full control over everything but it is work yet, I don’t think I would have it any other way. I’m now on to my next pointillist drawing. I’m thinking of doing something with some orchids.