Recently, I have been commissioned to paint a large mixed media triptych (3 panel painting) that once installed will cover most of an 18 ft. wall that will be visible to the public. The image here is a glimpse of the first panel. I’ll be sharing the context and details of where and when it can be seen in future posts.
I want to share with you my experience about an aspect of patience as an artist. Not being patient can be a good thing. It can mean you’re inspired and can’t wait to work. I’m not talking about that kind of patience. The kind of patience I am talking about has to do with being patient with your work having to be finished. What I experience at some point during the development of a piece is a period or several periods of confront, or uneasiness, a yearning to arrive at some destination. Anybody that practices his or her creative thing can attest to this. After all I am attempting to create something new, inspiring and soulful. I’ve put in many hours, and it looks pretty good. But that’s not enough for me; I want it to be more. The internal dialogue starts ramping up. So why can’t I make it work? What’s missing that would bring about that ah ha moment? Should I start over? Sometimes the 5 yr. old in me decides to show up and let me know that I really @%$#%@ !!! Other times releasing my 5 yr. old is a way to free myself up. That’s not the 5 yr. old I’m talking about here. I’m talking about the disempowering voice that takes over. It’s a tricky business being a painter, especially when creating abstract work, as there are many places one could stop and say it’s complete. I read that Willem de Kooning spent over a year painting, reworking, and contemplating Woman, I (1950-52).
From many years of painting I say there is an internal muscle that gets developed. I label it patience and trust. Without it many creative endeavors end up marginalized or worse, never finished. It’s a muscle that just notices the impatience like an old friend, and doesn’t resist the feeling. Once I embrace it, I usually have an impulse as to what there is to do next.
If you are curious or interested in participating in a workshop at my studio, you can get more information on my website here. Classes are scheduled thru the end of May.
(Note: If you are using a smart phone, when you get to my website you will find workshops under the information tab.)