Thursday, September 22, 2011

I want.

Woods Road 
6 x 12 oils


More and more I find myself dissatisfied with what I am producing in art.  Yes, the pieces are technically sound, but really quite boring. I create snapshots of the world around me on canvas or paper but inside I want more. They gyotaku moved me into different directions and helped break some of the boundaries but I need to push further. 

I don't want to join the realms of chocolate box painters.  I want my work to speak for itself.  I want to break the rules.  I want to create stories on canvas.  I want to create mysteries in paint.  I want, I want. Wanting isn't good enough.  I need to turn that into action.

Its easy to point out the shapes that are missing, but not as easy to find the missing pieces and make them fit into a slot.  Even writing in this blog becomes stale.  It seems like deja vu so often.  Here is X, done with Y, size of P, blah, blah, blah.  Who really cares?

So what to do? 

I need a plan.  I know the direction I want, more or less.  I want looser, broader, more colourful.  I want structure without structure.  Not abstract, though that may appear, but forms that are recognizable that have life and brightness to them.  I won't know what they are until they appear.  And I won't know if it will solve my quest and frustrations or just make them worse.

I pulled out this oil, called Chocolate Road, that I had done last year.  I'm currently looking at old pieces and trying to revitalize them and give them some more life.   I added colour into the trees, glazed the dark muddy water and rutted road and am happier with it now.  The original piece is below so you can see the difference. Better or worse?

Original

Art and its production is almost a living thing.  It grows and changes.  Accepting that and allowing myself to grow along with it instead of fighting against it is something I need to learn.

12 comments:

Christiane Kingsley said...

I hope that you will take us along with you on your artistic quest. I believe in you!

Paula Pertile said...

I hear you Jeanette. Not I personally think your work is at all boring. But I am, by coincidence, going through the same kind of thing right now. I have a piece on the board that may be the start of a new direction. I hope you can find the 'voice' you're looking for.
I do like the updated painting!

Jeanette said...

I'm sure you'll all be along for the ride Christiane. It may just get a little rocky at times.

Paula, thank for your support, its appreciated. Its good to know another person has similar thoughts, but not good by the same token, as I know the level of frustration they can cause.

I'm also working on something different as well. Is it a change of season thing that provokes this or is it an internal need that has been subdued for too long that suddenly rears its head and demands attention?

Time will tell.

Gary L. Everest said...

Jeanette,
I like the way you think. Painful as that may be, it's the price we pay for continually evaluating our life and art. Without this, why even call yourself human?
I've said it before...making art is the toughest thing I've ever attempted. No safety net, no one but yourself to blame for the failures or few-and-far between successes, little hope of monetary reward, expensive materials, etc.
Other than that, it's a wonderful career, work, hobby or curse.
Good luck, my Dear and if any solace can be offered, you're not alone.
Sincerely,
Gary.

Niall young said...

I totally understand what you're expressing Jeanette...in life we often see people we think need a kick up the backside...we as artists can actually ask to be kicked up the backside...it's so easy to be comfortable in what we're doing....and the other thing is that other artists seem to be doing things so much better.

what is the answer?..who knows! Stop painting..set a time limit to resume in one month..between now and then, draw..charcole,,pastle...sculpt...write..or even dare I say it...don't produce any art at all...no visual art at all...instead..swim...walk...run...cook...by the end of that month..if you're not dying to paint with something to say...I'd be surprised!As an Artist, you're not defined by what you do, but who you are!
PS..the reworked painting is gorgeous!

Alex said...

I can't say which is better, because to me it's like looking at the same scene but at different time of the day...and it's still a beautiful scene...but never the same at any given time. I like them both ^^

Michael Bailey said...

As I'm sure everyone who follows you will agree, your work is far from boring Jeanette! It's the true artist within that's continually trying to find bigger, better and more personal ways to express itself. Keep on inspiring us all :)

tracywall said...

Boy can I relate!
I like your analogy about the act of creating being a living thing. How true that we have to grow and change!

I fear staying in a rut with my work and feel compelled to try new (though my vision of new to me may be quite different from new to someone else. baby steps!) That change is a risk and a challenge too, in that we risk failure or losing some patrons who do not prefer the new direction.

Goes back to creating for myself or creating for my clan.

Love the discussion! I guess we can only keep plugging away!!

RH Carpenter said...

I know exactly where you are, Jeannette, although I don't know where you will go - but I will follow because I've loved watching your journey so far. I think all who have a passion, a need, to create run right into a wall at times - successful artists allow themselves to toss up a lot of chaff in order to get to the golden wheat. Keep tossing and working and thinking - you'll get there!

Jennifer Rose said...

i'm trying to be looser at college with my work so i know what you are trying to say. i prefer the reworked painting, the added colours and textures seem to give it more life :)

Jeanette said...

You're quite right Gary. It is the process of being human and reevaluating what we do and how we do it. This making art stuff's not for sissies!

Niall,I think my dissatisfaction comes on a number of different levels and burn out is imminent sometimes.

But yes, stepping away for awhile may just be a good idea.

Thanks Alex, all in the eye of the beholder, isn't it? :)

Thanks for your support Michael. I'm not a quitter, just stumble a bit sometimes.

Tracy, yes all the points you make are true. We do change over time and we risk things when we do. But we also hope that we change for something better also.

We also have to feed that inner need and let whatever happens happen.

Rhonda, thank you. It is a journey that takes a lifetime to even make a slight dent in hopes and dreams. I keep on trying.

Jennifer, I love tight, controlled pieces. Probably too much so. There is something inside that is pushing me for more. I'll look forward to seeing what you produce at college in a looser style.

Hedera said...

Jeanette, the softening of colour and line creates a sense of atmosphere and mystery in the second pic - it's lovely. I suspect the seasonal shift may contribute to your current feelings. The "darkness before the dawn" perhaps...