Artist’s Journal: NUMBER 97

Painting – My Own Voice!

 

I said: what about my eyes?
God said: Keep them on the road.

I said: what about my passion?
God said: Keep it burning.

I said: what about my heart?
God said: Tell me what you hold inside it?

I said: pain and sorrow?
He said: ..stay with it.
The wound is the place where the Light enters you.

– RUMI

 

continued from… – In the first eight-months that I lived in Portugal, I completed a hundred canvases. I’ve had two solo shows and, one scheduled in Germany. I began to build a career as an international artist. Now that I’m Stateside again, to support this career track, I would still like to teach studio art. My passion is foundation and figure drawing. My goal is to have four to six shows per year between Europe, Canada and the United States.

When I began drafting these serial posts this past April, my not yet wife Paula, her daughter Maddy and I were preparing for a whole new life that none of us ever imagined. I had, we had, no idea of what was next. Then as now, I knew that I must sell my work. For me to do so, I must produce “marketable” work that offers not only aesthetic appeal but a quality value to the casual art buyer, collectors and gallerists as well.

GER #17 – 2017 – 120x90cm – Acrylic on canvas

The Fairhaven studio has been established. More than half a dozen pieces have already been produced. But, I still need to find and associate with art consultants, interior designers and architects for commission and bulk sales. Once again, it is others that hold the key to my success. They have the power. But, my work must assist them in helping me make a living as a painter. It is symbiotic at best.

Paula and I were married this past June in Detroit. A year ago, I would have never even attempted to dream up such a future. Paula constantly reminds me that things changed because I changed. Yes, so much has changed!

I really don’t like or, have ever felt comfortable exposing so much of my private life like this. Yes, I am at the center of my own story. I have contacted scores of gallerists and other art professionals in search of representation, exhibition and sales opportunities. They need a story to embrace and to use in their promotion of me and my work. 

Supposedly, people don’t really by a painting for what it is but rather, for what it represents. A solution; a mirror of their emotions, a memory or, just something to match the drapes. And, all I know is, that for as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to be an artist yet, always never really knowing why. Every step I’ve taken, even when sidetracked, has been to eventually get back to the “here” that I’m now at and beyond.

As I stare out into the future, it is as if I’m standing at the edge of the ocean that once separated me from Paula at the beginning of our relationship. I still wonder about “tomorrow” and whatever it holds. Whether it was destiny or, because I needed to find out how far the journey to my goal goes. Well, I’ve gotten this far!

I am reemerging as a professional artist and I will not stop until I get to that place that has eluded me. That place where making art makes me happy and makes me money; a living.  I know that other artists, artists I know, have been also been thwarted.

Yet, the ones I’ve spoken to seem happy and have accepted their inability (not failure because there are both controllable and uncontrollable inner and outer forces) to match their dreams with reality, as fate. Maybe I can tweak my dream just a bit more. I won’t stop until I know what’s beyond that horizon. Not only until I reach it, but when I cross that line, the horizon, where the land, sea and sky meet. Just like the ever present horizon(s) in my paintings.

One day. One day soon, I hope. One day I’ll know how far I can go. But, that’s the whole point, isn’t it? Picasso said, “Go and do the things you can’t. That is how you get to do them.” For the longest time, it seemed I wouldn’t even get this far. I could have let the disappointment encourage me to stop. But, instead, I am reminded that although some of the people I loved may have changed me when their heart changed, mine didn’t. I hope that’s true.

I don’t put these feelings into my paintings, not consciously. Nobody cares about that or, do they? To paint that would accomplish nothing. Just because it’s a part of my history, It would just be a reminder and I wouldn’t be able to move past it. So, I paint over it. I still don’t know what my paintings say to you or, to myself. But, there is a voice that is still inside me that I try so hard to listen to.

The odd thing is that it goes quiet when I paint. Or, does it just whisper so low that I can barely consciously hear it? I progressed quite a bit during the time I lived in Portugal. I know who I am. I know what I am made of. I am an abstract painter. I am on an adventure that I would envy if it were not me.

I have been a lot of things. But, finally, I am an artist and the world is there and the tides of my life will always be falling and rising but, I finally know that come what may, I know the way I want to live.

Posted on: 10/11/2017, by :
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