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Documenting a period in my development that could become pivotal

Friday, February 04, 2011

Inspirational motivation VS. critical appraisal and Dr. Watson's plan

Sea Bass that Don caught the other day.
For some weeks I have been critical of maybe over a thousand of my past works. I identified some gems from the mass that just didn't have enough cut. I put the incomplete work in recyclable piles. Maybe a few changes would save them. Experience, however, shows my best work is in the immediate here and now. Small changes to works that have been around for some time usually kills the energy and life of the painting. After being in the critical mode, I am having trouble switching to inspired energetic painting.

I accept my difficulty of going back into painting while being concerned of how I am expanding with more paintings. Commencing painting again requires confidence. Making more, however, will be problematic ten years from now when I might want to live in smaller quarters. Ultimately my children will have to deal with too much of my work if I haven't found a place for it. I could dwell on the fact that I have not found a market and I don't want to be a slave to the marketplace.

Years ago a psychologist Dr. Watson suggested putting a cap on the amount of works I could make and keep. For him one painting was all he needed to feel he was an artist. Actually my benefits from making art is more than ego but a way of life. I ignored the Watson plan for years so now I am going to go to greater lengths to be a responsible family member. I am not only going to limit my work in numbers but I am going to reduce my inventory.

I have gone ahead for 25 years with confidence that my paintings will be found. Every new piece was begun with confidence that I would be able to store it somewhere. I had in 2010, however, reached the point where I was spending more time moving paintings from pile to pile than actually working.

I am going to continue painting but with a plan of reduction. Every year for eight years I will paint big ones starting at 3 feet by 5 feet using the supports I already have. Canvases will be removed for the purpose of becoming table coverings or rugs. But every year I will make sure I reduce the number of large painting supports by two. So when I am mid way through my 80's I will have only one large painting left.

Now that my plan is set, it is difficult to get into painting again, because I am in the severely critical mode. What will I do?

I have noticed interesting sunsets and clouds yesterday. We might go to the beach. I have made some tinted watercolor papers and have 17 empty tinted canvases. Also some ink, pens and new drawing pads. I'll start by rolling a dice to select which direction. The important thing in inspiration is not wait but get started then the inspiration comes.


Rain said...

This problem has been one I have tried to deal with all along. If I can't sell it or give it away, what can I do with it? It's a tough one. I hope you find your solution works

Parapluie said...

Everyone is different and every artist finds there way. Most assume selling is the ticket. I will be nmore than happy to sell, but it isn't the main thing I will depend upon.
Can't say if the plan works. Check back in a few days to see if rolling the dice works.