Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Our Creative Dance
Untitled Collage 6 x 6 by Leslie Avon Miller
“Our creative selves need plenty of sensory stimulation to feel inspired…” –Donna Watson.
Isn’t this the truth?! That’s part of what goes on in the blog world. We post things for our ongoing show and tell - grown-up version. We tell about trips to galleries, bookstores, art openings, urban streets, the sea, the mountains, or anywhere we see inspiration. We post photos of our creative spaces, show work in progress, and talk about colors that stimulate the eye. The blog world is an artist date on-line style! When I find work I love by an artist I “discovered” I often go back again and again and again and just gaze at the work. I can become almost awe struck with the beauty I see. What a gift is it to be alive, to be creative, and to allow myself to feel the satisfaction and challenge of creating a work of art. It must be the same for writers, musicians, chefs, decorators, scientific researchers….anyone who faces a problem to solve and applies their creativity to it.
Today I was reading a book called Creative Authenticity by Ian Roberts. He wrote “We need to look at other art. We need to study it and react to it. We’re not trying to reinvent artistic expression. Artists, as artists, are moved by art as much or more than by nature. Artists see subjects to paint based on how they have assimilated the art that has moved them in the past. There is of course a melting pot of influences.”
One use of notebook jottings is to go back and revisit the compelling symbols, and ideas I have had from the beginning of my artistic exploration. It can also be useful to review work from our past. When I do this I see that I have always done mark making from the very beginning, some of them much like the calligraphic marks in my current communication series. I have always been drawn to neutral colors, although I have also painted using more saturated colors. From the beginning I have often used warm earthy colors, or sparse but soft blacks and whites with just a hint of a third color for contrast. I have used grids, lines, geometric shapes and little specks of flung paint most often with organic edges. Texture and minimalism has been with me as “mine” from the very beginning. Can you find in your work elements you have consistently used in your authentic voice?
Recently in a notebook I found the following note to myself “Make the places where colors and shapes come together complex – scratch, dot, line, and value changes.” Thursday is a studio day for me, and I can hardly wait to get in there, roll up my sleeves and dance with my creativity!