Posts

Bara'

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3-24-2020

Bara', the Hebrew word for create.  This verb literally translates: to shape, to fashion, to create.  It is the verb used when God is creating the world the the things in it, conditions and circumstances, and transformations. It is a pretty comprehensive word when it comes to creation.  It was the force that God used to make it all. It is that force that allows us to create in our own unique way.  It is a force that can mold and transform us to create incredible works that speak to us as humans. 
I believe that we are made in His image - both male and female - and when we create, being linked to the Creator, we can tap into that same creative force. This brings me comfort to do what I need to do as an artist.  I have the ability, through the creative force of God, to create.  Does that mean everything I do is wonderful?! Of course, no but it does mean that if I lean into the Spirit, listen to the still, small voice, I can make, I can be fashioned and shaped into the arti…

Connections

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3-18-2020

Coronavirus.  This is a word that strikes fear, anxiety, skepticism, caution, and panic in people.  It is showing us both the bad and good in people and forcing us to isolate and reduce our physical connections with them as well.  I'm actually in isolation now, per my doctor, for my protection.  I had pneumonia a couple of months back and my lungs hurt so we're taking precautions, just in case.  It's a good thing although it will be hard because I really am a social butterfly. 
This isolation gives me time to redirect myself towards what is really important: my family, my faith, my friends, and my art.  Even though I'm not going out of the house, I'm so appreciative of our modern conveniences like the phone and internet.  It keeps me connected.  I guess that's the takeaway.  Stay connected even though we're separated.  The physical separation cannot stop the emotional and spiritual connections we have.  They transcend that.  I'm grateful for i…

Playing

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2-18-2020

I played today...  played in the studio after spending most of the morning printing my linocuts.  It felt good to just play and not worry about the end result - just having fun with the medium and imagery.  It's nice to take the pressure off and just create for the sheer fun of it.  Not that other times aren't fun but how many times are we creating for a show, commission, or have some other deadline to fulfill and not relaxed enough to let things just happen?  Sometimes playing gets put to the wayside and we get caught up in the production and not the process.  Today was fun, today was pure play and it was a blast! 

It was messy too!  I was working on a monotype with soft pastel.  Since the ink was waterbased, the pastel worked differently than with oilbased inks which made it a fun time of experimenting.  Nevertheless, it was a nice break from the intensity of what I've been working on with my Stirring Series and Lamentation Series.  This had no expectations - j…

Reflections on a Gift

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2-10-2020

I turn 60 this week.  I'm excited to turn that age for I don't see it as negative but as a positive point in my life.  It means I've been granted to live this long and been able to have a family, friends, and of course, be an artist for the majority of those years. 
As I reflect on my life artistically, I'm coming to the conclusion that this journey I'm on is really about process and the experience of making art.  The 'product' is the outcome of this experience but this 'product' records the movement and markmaking of my creativity, whether it be painting, sculpture, or something else.  I've also come to realize that I don't need to come up with something original, just something honest.  The originality comes with honesty; it comes from being in tuned with who I am and how I want to express myself.  For so long I thought that I had to create something that had a cooresponding concept or idea.  I'm realizing that I am enough.  …

Doubt

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“If you hear a voice within you saying, ‘You are not a painter,’ then by all means paint, boy, and that voice will be silenced.” ~ Vincent van Gogh

Ever have the doubt that you're not a painter or an artist? Or that you can't do it?  It happens all the time.  In fact, I've been told that if you don't hear that voice, or doubt yourself, you're in trouble!  For there is always something to learn, something to help you grow in your craft.  Once we think we've made it, we've stagnated and that is not a good place for an artist or anyone to be.  I can't imagine staying with one thing within my work and becoming stagnant.  I'd get bored and I would fear that the work would become mediocre.
I think that doubt can be a good thing, something that we can embrace.  Doubt allows us to think about what we are doing, critically reviewing our work, our practice, and our process.  It gives us a gift, if you will, of being able to change ourselves into something bet…

Destruction and Risk Taking

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“The urge to destroy is also a creative urge.” Mikhail Bakunin
Have you ever wanted to destroy something you've created?  Have you ever gotten to the point of  being completely done with a painting or sculpture?  It happens.  We, as artists, get to the point that we're through with what we've created; we don't like it and it's not working, so we want to destroy it.  As Mikhail Bakunin states that the destructive urge...  'is also a creative urge' (granted, he was a revolutionary anarchist but his statement is true). It is part of the creative process.  So many times we think that we shouldn't destroy what we've created.  But that urge, that part of the process can be very cleansing, very illuminating.  It gets rid of that which is holding us back or hindering us to go to the next level or place in our artistic journey.   Destruction also gives the artist the opportunity to take risks.  Risks are essential to creating for they allow the artist to del…

Painting is the Experience

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'A painting is not a picture of an experience, but is the experience.' Mark Rothko
I really resonate with this quote from Mark Rothko.  For so much of contemporary art is about the relationship of color, shape, value, and form but much of that work goes deeper than that.  The painting that is created from the depths of an artist's soul is more that the formal elements that create it.  The work that embodies the emotions, intent, and spirit of the artist gives us so much more to s/he who created it and s/he who views it.  It becomes a sacred space where two souls can converge to relate and resonate with what makes us human.  The experience of painting, the moments where paint and brush hit the canvas, translates what is inside of the artist; it is the essence of the creative force that makes the work.  It then becomes the experience.  The remnant of that experience is what lies on the canvas.
It is sometimes raw, sometimes beautiful, and sometimes tragic.  For the human exis…