Friday, April 6, 2012

the art of painting- not exactly what it seems

I am continually inspired by my students. Most are over the mid life line, have raised families, had careers,, travelled, and can spend their time the way they please. And they choose to spend a lot of it painting. They choose to take lessons, to put their work out there for the world to see, to get constructive criticism, to be challenged, frustrated and overcome obstacles to become better artists. They are willing to do this because they are passionate about their art. Some well from deep within them is full and brimming with creativity, beauty, new ideas and desire to express themselves through the magic of painting.
Painting, however, is not all that it seems. Painting is not about putting water soluble pigment on paper. It is not about how well or perfectly graded a wash may be. It is not even about describing a perfect rock, or cloud, or shadow . I'm not saying these things are not valuable, or that a painter shouldn't strive to learn everything they can about technique, tricks, and tools of the trade. But at the heart of painting, you will find the eye of the painter. That eye, of course, is connected to the unique and individual  painter's ideas;their love, their pain, their experience and understanding of the world around them. 
The way one sees the world around them is magnificently different from the way anyone else sees that world. The things that hold importance to each individual soul;  the way the light falls on a hand, or the colors at dusk, or the beauty of an old woman's face- these are the stones that build the foundations of great painters. And the wonder of it is that each person has that capacity simply because they live a life no one else has lived, experienced the world the way no one else has or ever will. Each human being is on a journey all their own and whether we choose to express the experience of our journey through music, painting, writing, sculpture- really doesn't matter. What matters is that we are all artists, because we are here! So don't be afraid to leave a mark on the world, in whatever way you choose,  and let them know what you saw during your brief stay here. You not only should do it for yourself, you should do it for the rest of us.

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good writing