...is so hard for me!! but i really want to get better at this!! .... i am so inspired by people who post regularly- and interesting, thoughtful things.... i feel like i spend so much time running around like a chicken with my head cut off, that sitting down to write about it seems like a waste sometimes. but i really want to cultivate the regularity of it and make it a habit for myself. so- don't give up on me y'all! i have a lot to say..... i just need to remember what it was!! hehe.
in other news, i got out of town for a few days last week. it was a much needed and very appreciated time away from my day to day, and a renewing and invigorating opportunity to be with other artists and people who appreciate the arts, at a wonderful conference in Pensacola, Florida. The conference is called, "Wings to the Spirit", and aims to explore, among other things, the relationship between art and our spirits. There were a number of wonderful presenters and workshops... One of my favorites was a talk given by a wonderful, and very well known Canadian painter named Sasha Rogers. SashaRogers.com who also happens to be the daughter of another painter who i love named Donald "Otto" Rogers. Her work is evocative of great landscapes and expansive vistas, but none of it is painted from landscape.... she talks a lot about her work describing the "place-less" and as an exploration of light and the spaces in between.... this is a terrible summation of her work, and she describes it all so brilliantly and articulately.... (you can read more about her work on her wonderful website). I was inspired, not only by the works themselves, but the way she spoke about them, her process and the things that are the most rewarding about others experiencing her work. The people who buy and live with her enormous, incredible paintings, often come to her telling her that they sit with their coffee in the morning and look at the painting... and that it is sort of a meditation for them that helps them start their day in a wonderful way..... or that, when they come home and sit and experience the image that it calms and soothes them; helps them to find peaceful places within themselves. She said that this type of feedback is the highest compliment that she can receive.
It got me to thinking more about why i do what i do and make what i make. It is not a new question that i posed to myself, i think about these themes often... but since i have been doing more painting of late, and was getting ready for an exhibition at the tea house... i found myself thinking again about my artist's "statement".... which i have never really formalized into something that is typed up and printed out for anyone to read.... i have always found myself sort of stumped by what to say, and feeling like what i make is too "all over the map" to describe or talk about in any kind of tidy or succinct way; so i always veer away from trying to describe it too much. Anyway, i have been thinking about it more and more and what i feel about it right now is that my own work is very much about joy. Joy that i feel from the process of creating it, joy as the "stuff" from which it is inspired... and joy as the hopeful outcome and experience for other people. For me, one of the highest compliments that i ever receive about any of my work is that it brings other people joy; that they are happy when they see it, or use it- or give it as a gift. There are other ideas and themes that i like to explore and that i could talk about here, but i will save that for another post.... because what it all boils down to right now, as i think about it, is this theme. JOY.