Archive for January, 2013

Forced Creativity

January 14, 2013

I realized pretty soon after college and especially my first year of graduate school that I could not WAIT for inspiration to hit me before I started painting.  I have to get in the studio DAILY and MAKE myself create, even if, sometimes, I have no ideas – and then hopefully (9 times out of 10) be inspired as I am experimenting with new techniques or priming canvases.

Here’s an oldie but a goodie of my grad school studio about 5 years ago.  In Florida. With no air conditioning. Fun times.

gradstudio

It is hard lately to find this motivation with so many other distractions – MOVING (this one’s a biggie!), Patrick gearing up for school and his new position at work, birthday parties, planning meals, etc…  but it is more important now more than ever to keep working and keep pursuing my art.

Something that helps me when I am in a rut with a piece is to make a bold and challenging change.  In one of the pieces I am currently working on, I decided to create this section of pattern that sort of runs/drips/cuts through one of the main areas of the composition.  It was completely scary, but I am pleased with the result so far.

Here is a detail of the unfinished piece (probably about 5/6 of the way done):

detail

These patterns came from some really cool pattern books that I received for Christmas – this one and this one.  This new painting is also a SQUARE and not a circle, which is also a new direction for me.  I have been doing the circles for awhile, and will still continue to do them, but I find myself not as interested in them as I once was.

Making big changes are hard for me – in life and in artwork…just ask my husband. 🙂  I am good with sticking to a plan and getting it done efficiently and effectively , but I get frustrated if it changes.  I am learning in life and in artwork that sometimes deliberate changes are good – and can lead me down an exciting new path that I never would have followed had I stuck to Plan A.

Reflections and Hope

January 2, 2013

“We need the valleys and the hills. The hills collect the rain for hundreds of fruitful valleys. And so it is with us! It is the difficulty encountered on the hills that drives us to the throne of grace and brings the showers of blessing. Yes, it is the hills, the cold and seemingly barren hills of life that we question and complain about, that bring down the showers.” (From L.B. Cowman’s Streams In The Desert – January 1)

Let me begin by saying I am not going through anything particularly tasking at this point in life, but I’m sure this year, just like most years, will bring its share of strenuous “hills”.  I am thankful and hopeful that these hills will produce blessings.  This is my hope for the new year.

As I reflect back on my art and life this past year I am amazed at how much one’s life can change from one year to the next.

This time last year I was excitedly making wedding plans:

planner

And then the “big day” finally arrived:

planner2

It was so fun to plan (stressful at times, yes), but the most fun has been the sweet days that followed being a newlywed.

I am thankful this transition has resulted in positive changes in my artwork as well as my personal life.  The mixed media pieces have taken a new direction that speaks to the innermost workings of my daily physical, emotional, and spiritual life.

"Remember", mixed media on canvas, 20 x 20 inches

“Remember”, mixed media on canvas, 20 x 20 inches

My paintings have taken on some characteristics of the mixed media pieces, as well as becoming more fluid, transparent, and organic.

"Remember the Rock From Which You Were Hewn (Isaiah 51:1)", acrylic on canvas, 36'' diameter

“Remember the Rock From Which You Were Hewn (Isaiah 51:1)”, acrylic on canvas, 36” diameter

Simply because I don’t like calling them “resolutions”, I have here a small list of goals for this year:

1. Don’t be afraid of the “hills” in life – embrace them and strive towards them and through them.  I tend to err on the side of caution most of the time, so this will be a paradigm shift for me.

2. Be more intentional about my relationships with friends and family (hard for this introvert).

3. Keep praying that the Lord would make me generous and humble.

4. Read one book a month.

5. Expand my artistic territory – always be looking for a new way to present myself and my artwork.

Happy 2013!!