(partial view of this oil pastel painting)
Something you’ll find at just about any art studio is canvases of unfinished works. Shapes and streaks of a beginning and I’m almost there until I stopped abruptly. Artists will tell you that they reach a point where they decide to sidestep the finish line, the finish line being the completion of their piece. An artist could lose inspiration or direction smack dab in the middle of their session. They disengage. They lose their way. This occurrence has ended many an artist’s dream, making them feel they are not up to resolving the inspirational idea that made them pick up their brushes in the first place. This is one explanation for lonely canvasses lying dormant for days, weeks, even years, before they are revisited by their maker. A lot of them have been taken out of their hiding places, scrutinized closely, turned this way and that, then deposited right back, in that darkly abandoned area of the studio.
However, there are the lucky few, that get a reprieve with new life breathed onto their surfaces by the addition of fresh paint. The public would be surprised by how many great works are the end result of painting over unresolved ideas, mistakes … that lie just beneath the new surface of a popular painting. Artists do struggle with decision-making throughout their creative careers. They are forced to call something done, which leaves them feeling unsatisfied, uninspired, even depleted. Artists can suffer through their painting episodes because many of them cast themselves onto the gesso-primed cloth “out there for the world to see” … not them but what’s inside their minds, showing their vulnerabilities and inhibitions. Their hitherto untapped stimulations and yearnings to express themselves adequately. Most are humbled when their work is applauded and then go on to create more, and all because they were encouraged, appreciated and accepted.
I believe everyone can paint if they try. It is one of the simplest ways to get things out of your system. There certainly is a lot of anger displayed through the process of applying colorful, wet paint to an awaiting surface. It’s blended on a palette, stroked on with brushes and then allowed to become dried evidence of dark thoughts. It’s therapeutic! I think the renowned mid-century artist, Jackson Pollock was driven by his addiction to drink, to show us his relentless anguish through the spatters and drippings of his provoked masterpieces. If he can paint anyone can paint. My advice is to go to the craft store, spend $20.00 on materials and give it a try. Were the people of the world expressing themselves on canvas and allowing their seething anger to be released … to dry and evaporate, then we might be left with lots of interesting masterpieces, less confrontations and a lot of peace. I wonder what our government officials would come up with were they told to create through painting? It’s something to think about.
Using a non-profit organization calendar of animal photos I traced and sketched this work. I had to take my time because getting the proportion right isn’t easy with animals. I was unsure about using paint and for that reason, I used oil pastels. Pastels look like colored chalks. I reached this point and put it away until later. Joe likes to hang up my finished and unfinished pieces. (I do take some down you understand.) This one is hanging on a wall and after about fourteen years, I am now confident I can paint the surface with oils to complete it. Wish me luck, and do go buy some art supplies because you’ll be surprised by what’s inside of you.
Original Art By Theresa
(*tweaked @ 4:04 p.m.)
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