Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Summer Inspiration

Summer is usually a time when I drag a bit...I have a hard time working out when it's hot and I tend to prefer being poolside or napping during sticky afternoons when I'm not at work. This summer, however, has been thick with inspiration. Having my 15 month old toddling around keeps the energy higher in the house and he's always up to something. It's amazing to see bits of myself in him: he LOVES to draw with his markers and crayons and he LOVES animals. We had to peal him off of the goats and pigs at the petting zoo at the state fair last weekend.

I have been working to discipline myself by nourishing my mind as an's such an input/output process. I have been hungry to see new art: the term "feast your eyes" comes to mind. I have been watching a lot of documentaries and interviews, doing a lot of reading and learning a lot about art history, and working hard at getting my art out there by responding to ads and entering shows. Watching videos of people like Pollock, Basquiat, Andy Goldsworthy, Alice Neel work is truly inspirational. I have taken a page from Jackson Pollock's drizzly style of painting lately and I love how you can really create texture when you layer things on super thick. My art professor's voice echoes in my head, "BE BOLD!"

It can be a little overwhelming to keep pushing when I am working full time and mommying the rest of the time. It often feels like I have to work at the Angie time in there also. Sometimes the prospect of plugging away at a job that I'm only partially passionate about can overwhelm me, so entertaining daydreams about showing work and getting to spend more time painting and in the studio (or even having a studio, for that matter) can really pick me up. I have to visualize that it's possible and I have to believe that I'm good enough and that I deserve to live my dreams.

I'm excited to say that I will be showing and selling my work at a coffee shop in Old Roseville beginning the third Saturday in August, which means that I will spend the next three weeks trying to get enough work together, fretting over frames, undulating through self doubt and anxiety about whether people will like my work, and finally...the show will be up and I'll be there to fidget and blush during the opening because that's what I do.

A peaceful, very feminine voice has surprised me a few times lately in my work. I admit that sometimes doing work that I know will be shown is like writing in a journal that I know people will open and read. I sometimes dislike how it feels to stand back from a piece and wonder whether people will engage with my work and whether it will be commercial enough. My momma once told me, "All you can do is your best," and I love that. I hope that at when I consider all the different hats I wear (mommy, wife, employee, friend, disciple, artist) I can stand back and say "I'm doing all right because I'm being true to myself." I think that spirit of self affirmation frees me to be really, really kind to myself, and I think that's the beginning of so many good things in life.

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