The art we make should be an expression of who we are as a person. What we like. What we see. What we feel.
If you're not expressing that, why create art at all?
This is a topic I've explored before on this blog. For me it cut's to the bone, having worked as an in house illustrator full time for 13 years.
I've alway loved creating art and spent many years just working at getting better. I wasn't too focused on subject matter for those early years. Mostly I was interested in acquiring the skill to create images that moved me and others. I also wanted to achieve at least a small level of the technical ability that was so obvious in the work of artists that I admired.
All that time I was making my living at jobs that only had art as a part of what I did. I was a manager, buyer and designer among other things. But, my dream was to make my living full time as an artist. I felt blessed when that dream came true.
It didn't take long before the compromises contained within my position as hired gun illustrator began to rub the wrong way. This rubbing process forced me to see beyond craft and to start looking deeply into what's behind creating art, the purpose, authenticity and processes involved.
Today's post is about creating art that compromises only with the universe in that we must put our egos out of the frame and let what's beautiful about us as unique individuals come forth.
I called this post dark art as I had a lady in my studio today looking to buy a painting for her home. Unfortunately my work was too dark for her decor so I recommended the work of some other local artists.
It got me thinking about my time as a commercial artist and how in that time I could have made a bright painting for her no problem. Now though it would feel wrong to use my art to chase a buck. At least my painting art.
I enjoy doing the odd graphic project . It's fun to use those skills but I'm so glad that I got out of the commercial art game while the gettin was good.
Now I work at finding markets and buyers for my paintings that are already looking for what I do.
A bit about "Late Summer" I painted this about 8 months ago. It's pretty dark and is one of my last totally subdued paintings. I really held back on strong contrasts here. Many others that I'd painted from this period have since been repainted. I left "Late Summer" alone though.
The actual painting has a nice luminescent quality that I like. I had really worked hard at getting a certain feeling across. So, I've let it be what it is even though I can see ways that I could improve it. I know to do so would kill it.
Sounds like a topic for a future post.