An incredibly large “too big to fit anywhere” thank you is in order to everyone who came out to the opening Friday night. It was a success and you guys helped make it happen. I got to see lots of familiar faces and some new ones. The experience as an overall real good time. A+ to all of you. Now that it’s all over, I’m packing up and saying goodbye to several pieces. Saying farewell as I cover up that oh so familiar face with brown packing paper is quite the emotional experience. It has to happen. I wouldn’t be a great artist if my entire collection was sitting around in my studio forever.
I’m happy I can get back to work now. For a good while I couldn’t touch anything because I had to make sure everything was presentable in the atelier. That’s all in the past now as I’ve recreated my natural habitat of questionably toxic fumes while playing my favourite game of “Was that paint I just ate?”. There’s a lot of wrestling with the medium and keeping myself from making “bad” art to fill wall space. Since collectors tend to buy several pieces at once and put me in demand, I have some blank spots to cover. This sounds like the ultimate first world artist problem. I’m excited that I’m in demand, but I don’t want to put up crap for the sake of volume. Oil is a very sensitive medium and I can’t push it too far in one go. An example would be Sandra Bland’s portrait as I can’t rush it despite wanting to have it finished as soon as possible. Rome wasn’t IKEA furniture that could be assembled in an afternoon.
“You’re not really painting if you aren’t having problems” is something one of my teachers always told me. He’s still right and I don’t know what you’re doing if you never run into issues while you work. Seriously? You copy and pasting? What drugs are you taking and who’s the doctor prescribing them?It’s in those moments of panic and uncertainty that the most beautiful things tend to happen. Fear kills the creative process. You have to float in the unknown and let it happen. There are times my brush is moving while my mind is saying “what the actual shit” and then the piece becomes itself. Like a Hemingway story with a lot less sexism, good art is honest and it requires bravery.