On this fine rainy day I thought I would share some thoughts about art and rather than focusing on a past plein air excursion, I will share one of my watercolor paintings. In this post I would like to share my thoughts on creating in general. Well, actually more like what I have been experiencing lately with painting and creating. I have been taking the bull by the horns and decided to get out there and try to sell my art. I am fortunate to live in the country and the closest “real” town that provides any shopping or culture is approximately 22-24 miles away. With my daughter’s prompting, I decided to put my artwork in a local store who handles arts and crafts of local artisans. Being shy and living away from excitement that a town and culture can bring, this was a BIG step.
My “meet the artist” affair held at the shop was very nerve-wracking and eye opening. I have to admit that I was very disappointed at the lack of interest and the only people who talked to me were the family members and friends that showed up! Now this was difficult for such as a person as myself because I am shy and I often go through doubt about my art and my abilities. Can you imagine?! The days after my “meet the artist” gala, I sank into a depression of sorts. I have had many, many days if not months of depression in the past because of my art. I initially got past this disappointment and pulled myself up and carried on. Is art about making money and becoming known or is art about creating and expression? My answer to my own questions lifted me up and out of that depression.
Being a Christian artist I can’t afford to stay in the dumps for too long. Art is far more than making paintings or expression. For me it is a day by day exploration of self and my faith. For me the two are intermingled. Who knows what went wrong….perhaps nothing did go wrong! It is all in the perspective and that is what I need to focus on, what do I really want from my making art? That is part of the struggle. For whom am I trying to please or to impress?
Take for instance this watercolor painting that I did a few years ago. I painted this thinking of Agate Beach on the north coast of California, my favorite place to vacation. When I look at this painting, I can almost hear the gulls, the wind, the surf. Do I really care if someone likes it or not? I love it! Is the value of this painting for me in how it is received by others? Their comments or their silence? Ultimately art is our view of the world, our expression of what is meaningful to us, the artist; not the admiration or the reception it garners.
I have decided that I simply carry on! Feeling depressed or sorry for oneself doesn’t push forward to any heights at all of any kind. It is a matter of perspective. I will trudge on with a step that keeps to the path of my own desires, my own vision, my own perspective that is heightened by my faith and trust in God. So carry on!