Preface: I know. I sound crazy. Welcome to the life of an artist. #unashamed
For me, painting daily is like feasting on an endless homemade Thanksgiving meal for days, constantly surrounded by the joy of being fully known, not to mention filled to the brim with warm, happy thoughts and good freaking food. Having dined with my canvas and fed by my paintbrushes, I frequently leave my studio with a similar sense of being known and filled to the brim with good food for thought, even when its hard to digest.
So my hope is I can sometimes share some of these sweet somethings, they will resonate and then fill you up with some food for thought too.
Heres to the first plate…
This week I posted a picture of some paintings and asked you to choose your favorite one and tell me why.
Later, I heard a loving voice in me say, “There you go again, Jennie.“
So I stopped in my tracks, like an outrageous little girl running wild on the play ground, responding in utter sass to my teacher, “What did I do this time?“
I stopped long enough to see myself looking to chase down the secret to what people want and desire in my paintings; trying to catch people’s thoughts and preferences. The deceitful desire within me was not to truthfully grow and learn from your opinions, but to find an easy answer and formula and hold on to it.
But, through all my sass and constant awareness of how right I am…we are not supposed to live like that.
Its so easy for us to cling to the perfect formula; to hold on to relationships and hometowns and jobs we are familiar with; to remain fixed and determined to have the future we are convinced we are supposed to have; to stare life in the face and tell it to be what you want it to be…but in living with such control, we miss the opportunity to allow insecurity and uncertainty to drive us towards what we cannot imagine is in store for us.
People come to me and ask for custom paintings for special friends in their lives. More often than not, they have general ideas of what they like, but they do not know exactly what they want…to be honest, neither do I.
“We have to be caught off guard. As long as you are in control, you are going to keep trying to steer the ship by your previous experience of being in charge.”
The best paintings I paint are the ones that come from a place of free, untamed creativity and raw imagination, uninhibited by people’s preferences and opinions (see below). Although I truly do love your opinions, I realize I cannot paint from a place of trying to please you, nor from a place of trying to please myself.
Painting, as with life, is about living in truthfulness and using the raw materials we are given to create and grow.
Today lets not be confined to what we know, but open our eyes to see what has not been seen, create what has not been created, and choose to believe it is better than anything we can imagine.