Routine – Does anyone remember that concept? I consider myself to be an individual who thrives on predictability and a reliable routine. Yet, in the many months since the pandemic began, there has been very little of it in our household – perhaps you can relate? I have not written to my artistic audience (You!) since May. I had the nagging feeling that I wasn’t sure what to write about? Initially, I hadn’t felt the preceding months to contain many creative highlights of my career.
“Ugh, what is there to share? I haven’t done anything for months” says Frank…
And there it is folks, voice of negativity. I call it “Frank” (not based on any actual Franks, and my apologies if your name is Frank) So Frank, he sits on my right shoulder and whispers negativity in my ear when I am most susceptible. You should hear the mean stuff Frank says. Man, I can’t stand Frank!!!!
Let’s put Frank in his corner, look at what is actually happening, and what I have been doing over the last few months. If you, yourself have been feeling the same thoughts of unproductivity, I would encourage you to do the same. We all need a lot less of “Frank” out there!
Over the last several months, much of my time has been committed to continued play and experimentation with Oil and Cold wax. I am not sure I can still say I am new to this medium. However; I would definitely say I am still finding my way with it and investigating what role it plays in my equine work.
I completed ‘Silhouette of Solitude’ in early July (above). To my delight, it found a home very quickly. I really loved this work, and it is always a compliment when a collector loves it too.
I have spent a great deal of time looking for a way to subtly incorporate the line quality of the sketches I created early in the pandemic with mark making, cold wax, and pigment sticks. This is evident in the works “Today” (above) and “High Horse” (below)
There is only so much you can do to control cold wax. Often it yields unexpected results. This means sometimes the day often goes like this…. “YaY that passage is awesome 👍” followed by “ugh..well that certainly changed things 😬” Regardless, I consider it to be a forgiving medium because it requires one to learn forgiveness about yourself as an artist. An artwork is not ruined by a certain action, it just becomes something else.
Allowing myself this time to play with cold wax is teaching me to be brave and to move on, not listening to “Frank’s” destructive words. Learning a new medium and evolving your work beyond what is expected of you takes bravery and patience – because the outcome may not be immediate, results might and likely will be intermittent AND those used to your usual work may not like it. Lastly, you might not have a lot of finished work to show for all the hours spent, however, I have been very prolific in play! Creative living is a path for the brave and this is not time wasted, it is time spent growing. If and when I do feel overwhelmed, experimentation has become more frustrating than gratifying, I listen to the voice saying I need to step back for a bit…..
…I retreat to my comfort zone and play with what I know how to do well. I consider myself to be very lucky that I have years of portraiture up my sleeve to fall back on and infuse as I move forward. I find balance with what I can do…and return to muster up the bravery to take it several steps beyond and out of my comfort zone another day. Having the tools to do both feeds my soul with creativity, fuels my want for exploration, frees me from stagnancy because folks, same is boring.
As always, thank you for reading, I love to hear your comments and maybe you have some arguments to share about your “Frank” – I’d love to hear.