Fixations And Admirations
Sometimes a painting captivates me to the point that the power of it stays with me afterwards, and certain of it’s characteristics find their way into my work. I’m not sure if I should see this as a setback or as part of the process of moving forward.
I find myself trying to not paint like what I saw, saying to myself that I don’t want to be like someone else. But, somehow, it bleeds into a subsequent painting. It’s like I have to get it out of my system before I can move on.
I tire of it quickly though and go back to seeing things in my own way pretty soon. I don’t get tired of seeing and admiring it though (after all, the strength of great art is in it’s staying power) but just in painting like it.
I want people to walk into a gallery and know my work instantly. This is a sign of development and refinement, and is right up there in importance with my vision–what the work is about. In fact, voice and style are interrelated.
I guess with the advent of abstract and modern art, style became secondary to intent; you might know an artist by what is made rather than by how. But with a more traditional painter/artist, style is synonymous with personality.
How many of us go about our days like everyone else, doing and saying the same things over and over, our minds fixed in conformity? How many of us ever dare choose Frost’s unbeaten path?
It takes confidence, won through many trials overcome, to find ourselves, our individuality. This became overtly apparent to me reading the words of Steve Jobs (shared at Inspired Personality.com): “Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.” Follow your heart.” How many times has this been said? It took one more time for me to hear it clearly.