Think of Art. Think of all the things that go into a piece of art and then think of life. They really are mirror reflections of one another.
Art is a subset of life. Life is all encompassing, yet in a holographic sense is reflected back out through the prism of art.
Which is why as a species humans are compelled to make art. We humans, use it as a means to better understand ourselves and our place in the greater sphere that is life.
It’s a means, a vehicle, which we sometimes discard.
Other times we don’t because it still keeps offering explanation. Frankly speaking it’s very useful.
Maybe that’s why a lot of Totalatarian regimes set about extinguishing art and artists first. Art and ideas can be very subversive especially when it’s at odds with the Party line.
The briefest look at recent history will bear this out.
Not every painting is going to be sold, indeed not every painting deserves to be sold, and some are just plain bad.
But others are good, very good, and it’s those which keep us going.
Immediately the question arises of what is good and what is bad?
Ahh, therein lies the rub. We don’t know. If we depend on what’s flavor of the month culturally speaking we are certain to get it wrong.
If we can listen and hear what resonates when we view, say a painting, then we will hear something reflected back. An old voice, lost in the wilderness of passing years, which we are happy to hear again.
If you hear that, you better act. At least buy the painting. You won’t go far wrong.
If you’ve ever had the sad task of trying to sort out the few earthly belongings of a recently deceased person you’ll know the feeling such a task engenders.
You really can’t take any of it with you and in reality a lot of what you leave behind will probably be discarded quickly anyway.
You don’t have to make art to feel that your life mattered..But it helps.
Maybe a lot of your paintings will end up on the bonfire, or better still loaded unto a small boat and pushed out into the ocean and then engulfed in flames.
Better still, if they take pride of place on walls and registered something in the viewer’s eyes. Of a happy time where days seemed to slow to a crawl and art was made for the sake of making art.
For the love of the task.
Time is the task master and it stops for no one.
This day will pass and so will many like it, but each unique in its own particular possibilities. A wonderful gift to be embraced.
While you’re in carp Diem mode, why not click the galleries link and embrace these. I’m sure they’ll appreciate the virtual hug of your wandering attention.
Have a lovely Thursday
Crows can now be seen flying north and seagull screams are once again audible.
Spring is struggling forth and a misty grey light tracks my journey to work.
It only takes one morning of full blown sunshine to split the whole thing wide open and there can be no going back – spring is here.
My favorite time of the year. Long evenings and new possibility.
Winter shackles discarded and the whisperings of ‘Begin again’ sigh in the breeze.
I wish I painted landscapes and could take off across the fields Van Gogh style, sans the straw hat, and produce what meets the eye.
But would they sell?
Blackened edged canvas with stray moths congealed to its surface, worked in as part of the fabric of the overall painting?
Not everyone’s cup of tea.
The artist is always selling his vision of things and people buy in if it resonates with them.
Even when the market is dictating that we must paint fluffy pink cats we are better to stick to our original impulse and see it through to its natural end.
There’s gold in them hills, all we have to do is just go out and find it.
There’s also gold in these galleries, already spun and woven, ready for adventurous art lover’s blank and vacant wall space.
I have found that one’s love of art can ebb and flow. Most living things have an ‘ebb and flow’ aspect to them.
Life is in continual motion; it’s a sign of a healthy system. Stagnation and fermentation would be its polar opposite.
Initially I found this to be quite alarming.
For instance you might hear yourself saying –
“I don’t have the same interest in painting as I did before. Is it on the way out?”
Possibly, everything is possible, but more than likely not.
You don’t just lose your love of art, it’s too deeply ingrained, but it does change, and that change may feel like a loss, and it could be argued that it is.
Change is good, but unpredictable. Otherwise it won’t be change. Change is also exciting.
You find yourself looking at new artists and new ways of doing things that five years ago just would not feature on your horizons of experience.
Not a thing to be feared or fought, just warmly embraced.
In these galleries you might even notice that change unfolding. Hopefully for the better.
As superman might say ‘Onwards and upwards’.
Good man superman.
The drip drip of daily creativity until a river is formed. An unstoppable fast flowing belt of water which makes it way to the ocean.
When the flood subsides what we see are the residues of its powers washed up on the shores, lie hard-backed half finished novels and paintings in various stages of completion.
Half closed eyes and three fingered hands hold broken cups of spilled coffee. These people should have had all their features completed in the primary acrylics and allowed to enjoy their short existences in peace. For these are the paintings we never finish.
You always have to find a way and indeed the time to finish what you started. Preferably before you engage with the next project or else noting gets done and everything is curled up in its own dormant potentiality.
The ability to focus is the first gift we need and then the stubborn persistence in refusing to have our heads turned by the constant sweep of new ideas. Corn feed ideas fattened on the hopper of social media.
We need time to dwell and reach completion in this image beaten life when there is always another way of doing things. Please do it at least one way before it’s abandoned and another project taken up.
Advice to the self, which I must take.
Thankfully I must have listened sometime as these happily completed works will testify to.
Another week, thank God.
When do you let a painting go, particularly if it’s not going well?
Draw a line under the experience and sand the weeks of work down and begin again?
Some people never do that. Mores the pity. There would be less bad paintings in the world.
What a terrible blanket statement to make.
Can there really be such a thing as a bad painting?
I don’t think there can.
It depends on the criteria you judge, and criteria are always going to be stacked subconsciously even before you start making the act of judgment.
These ethereal criteria are schooled by your perceptions, prejudices, hopes and idealized dreams.
Criteria are to by watched and questioned and not particularly trusted out of hand.
You learn so much from the ‘bad’ paintings. It could be argued more than you learn from the good. To judge too harshly would be unwise because you could blind yourself to all the merit gained in the process. And that would be the real disaster.
So think before you throw out the baby with the bathwater, at the very least let the baby have its say.
Learn from your experience and move on in confidence knowing that the next painting will be the real winner.
Have a lovely weekend.