Tuesday, November 21, 2006
thoughts of art
I did end up going up to print monotypes today with my friend, Carla Sonheim. It was fun!!! It is energizing to go up with someone else, and see other techniques and ideas, and just to have someone to talk to. I wonder if non-artists realize how much time artists actually spend alone, in the studio, creating art. I decided as long as I am here in Salida, surrounded by artists, I am going to take any chances I can to collaborate, to work with other artists, to fuel the fires, etc. that I possibly can. I feel lucky to know so many talented people, and I want to see them, to watch them create, to be inspired by them (and hopefully inspire them!), and to really seize the opportunities I can to immerse myself in this hot-bed of creativity. It is such an exciting thing. Carla is certainly on the top of my list of people who inspire me.
I had a pretty good day. It is interesting how I am not always as happy about the work at first. I seem to have to go home, or go away from it, and then pull it out later to look at it before I really see something I like in it. One thing I learned today is that I am thinking I no longer want to bottom weight any of my work. (For those who don't know, a bottom weight is when you put more empty space underneath a piece of art than at the top. Your eye seems to balance this out for some reason. It works if you are doing something like a landscape... but with my work, I no longer think it applies. It is too limiting.) I think I know which end I want at the top, and then when I get a second look, I realize it is almost always as interesting, if not more interesting with the part I put on top, at the bottom. (or even on the side!) And vise-versa. If this makes any sense. I like to turn my art around and around. It changes my whole perception of the composition, the strength of the individual elements, and even the meaning of the piece. Just to turn it around!! Does this mean that I am just a rebel?? I suppose. But I don't really mind being a rebel, as long as it means I am doing my OWN art. Creativity is destroyed by conformity.
There is more that I have to say about abstract art, and why I am so obsessed with it, but now is not the time. You have to wait if you want to hear more about that.
I mentioned my dog and the eating of mice rice last time, so I don't want to leave those of you who are interested hanging. I am hoping that two little turds are not an indication of a mouse problem. I prefer to remain optimistic. The mouse was just visiting. I haven't seen it, or any indication, other than the two damning brown rice. Which were, incidentally, eaten by my beloved dog. It's one of those things you try to forget about. Except this morning, when it was too early to wake up, and a warm, wet tongue licked my face, ...suddenly I was reminded of the mouse turds. Well, let me tell you right now that a thought like that can jolt you out of bed in SECONDS!!! No kidding. I bolted like a colt at the sound of a car backfiring. Wet, turd tongue. Yuck. I think I prefer the alarm clock after all. I mean, I love my dog, but come ON!!! Why can't he be the exception to the rules of dogs and unbridled ickiness??? !!! Really.
Well, that is enough of that. I am a professional here. No point in getting off the subject. Which, now that I think about it, was art. Where was I??? Oh, something about conformity. I have never been very good at conforming. I will say that in my own mind, abstract art is the rock and roll of painting. Realism, if done well, is probably classical. Surrealism, well, if pressed, I would say it is the elevator, easy listening of the art world. I mean, it is slick and refined, but if you spend any time at all with it, it has an underlying creepiness that makes me turn the dial. This is my opinion, only. The thing that I love about art, as music, is that there is a song, a style, a painting, out there for everyone. My likes are only MINE. I do not expect, and I hope hope hope, that you have the nerve to disagree. That means you know who you are, and aren't afraid of it. That is what makes it truly intriguing. I will say that it is good for a person to expose themself to something they thought they didn't like, really to spend time with it, and allow themselves to get to know it. Then, if you still don't like it, you can come up with reasons why, and you won't be afraid to say it. If you find yourself surprised, you have learned something, and grown. Art is like people, you have to spend time with it, to really get to know it.
Just so you know, the image I am including with this post is a monotype from a couple of weeks ago. It is not from today. Today's monotypes have to be looked at and thought about before I can expose them to the public eye. I just wanted you to have an image. I do like this one.