Sunday, February 26, 2012

When I Am Not Painting I'm Being Grandiose

I have not felt as if I have been doing much artwork lately, although that is not true.  I have been doing much computer work finishing up the layout on several Book of Bartholomew stories.  I have also been working slowly on the city council scene for one of the stories.  Below you can see the inked version.  I am currently painting the image with watercolors.

One thing that has been preoccupying me is that soon I will pursue a building to begin a small art center in my neighborhood.  I have been talking with many people about this endeavor and trying to develop a mission for the center and configure what programming would take place.  I have decided I want more people's input, so that will be my next post. Stay tuned.

Sometimes I loose sight of what is important.  The training I received in school, and the general paradigm of the era I grew up in, was that artists cranked out work to be sold in galleries.  If you weren't producing paintings you weren't an artist - you were a hobbiest.  It is hard to shed that old paradigm which is no longer true.  Technology and the general understanding that being a creative artist simply means creating something and putting it out there for anyone to see.  I hope this change has come about because artists have figured that out that there are far more artists than the gallery world can provide for.  It is not up to the gallery owners and collectors to decide who is and who is not an artist.  It is no longer a matter of sitting in your studio producing as much as you can and, if it doesn't work, then getting a real job.

The other paradigm for artists back then was to become an art professor at a college and then have summers, weekends and a little help from students to get your work done.  Today, with the technology we have, the paradigms has shifted.  There are more avenues for expression and more venues for exposure.  So what am I doing when I am not making a painting to be sold at a gallery? I'm busy making the world I want to live in.  A creative world where people are helped with their life decisions. A world where artists collaborate with each other because of the energy and potential for satisfying work.  A life where the walls between disciplines are breaking down. A life where the walls between people are crumbling.  Yes, it sounds grandiose, and it is - but it's not.  It is simply making a decision every day to do something creative and to reach out while doing it.  This is against the grain and counter to society and most peoples lives.  That is the only reason it seems grandiose, because you can't be grandiose unless you are contrary to the norm.  Anything contrary to the norm will seem grandiose - or grotesque. I guess I am choosing not to seem grotesque.

So what am I doing when I am not painting?  I am still here making, working and being my grandiose self.


  1. It was good to see you at the Walker.

    I am comforted by the concept regarding what makes an artist, especially with such changing technology allowing a different space than the gallery to reveal creativity.

    Good luck with your new space development.

    1. Hi Judy,
      Yes, it was nice seeing you and Wendy on Saturday. Quite the good show up at the Walker right now. Hope your creativity is going well.

  2. I love the title of this post! I also enjoyed reading it.

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