Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Artist Mentor

I finished the book The Artist Mentor by Ian Jackman and it was just the book I needed at this time in my career. I wrote in a previous post about Technique and there is so much more addressed in this book that I decided to base a few posts on what I read. I knew I wasn't alone in my thinking about creativity and art, but I had no idea I was in the company of so many artists.
I will be writing about Art for Art's Sake, Taste, Inspiration, Subjects, The Creative Act, Being an Artist and Art for All. I would love to begin a dialogue about these subjects. If you would like to comment clink on the comment link at the bottom of the post.


My apartment is my own world that I have created for myself. I am preparing to move in a few months to create another world. I have been here for three years and I take my camera out often to create images of what I look at everyday. The objects tend to look different each day due to the effects of the light outside. Last night the light was perfect to take a few images of my living room and bedroom windows. No matter where I live I have to have lots of light, it is my biggest requirement. Without it I am miserable. Because I love the light so much I create lots of images of it hitting my objects. Last night I became obsessed with my windows, blinds and curtains. The light changed so fast, I couldn't put my camera down. I was in a zone. Getting in the zone is such a high for me. As I become a more mature photographer I realize that I don't have to travel to exotic places to find interesting subject matter. I don't even have to leave the comforts of my apartment to create interesting and beautiful images. Of course I am not opposed to traveling to exotic or new destinations, but I bet if you look around your own surroundings you will find fantastic light, ready made still lifes and various shapes to photograph, draw or paint until you can hop a plane. You may surprise yourself at what you find.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I have been reading a book titled, The Artist's Mentor written by Ian Jackman. The book is filled with quotes from famous artists about creativity. I just finished the chapter about technique and Jackman posed an interesting question: "How does technique affect creativity? I started thinking about my own technique with different projects and how my technique changes with how I am feeling at the very moment. If I am not happy with my material or the way I placed it on the canvas or how I used a different photography technique I lose interest and my creative momentum. Sometimes just for an hour or two, sometimes for a week or longer. I have to find a technique that works for me or what I am trying to express. Some artists can work through this, but I find that I just stop and need to re-group. During these times I wonder if I am a real artist and if I really know what I am doing. Maybe I should just quit. I found out that I am not alone in this thinking.

"Around 1883 a sort of break occurred in my work. I had gone to the end of impressionism and I was reaching the conclusion that I didn't know how either to paint of draw. In a word, I was at a dead end." - Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Instead of doubting myself, I am trying to realize that this is part of the process and that I need to work through it. I have found that if I keep working through a technique that might not be working for me I discover new things even if the final result is a disaster. Technique plays a huge part of my creative process. It is part of my experimentation. What about you? How does technique affect your creative process?

Sunday, July 19, 2009


In September 2008 I was laid off from my full time job as a Director of Education at a local arts organization. Since then I have been looking for a full time job as an arts administrator all over the country from LA to New York. In the meantime to stretch out that unemployment money I work part time in the mornings as a cashier at our local Giant Grocery Store. Everyone takes a turn being a cashier in the Cafe Carry Out section and in the mornings it can be very slow. Today was my day for carry out and to pass the time, I decided to doodle what was around me. The carry out section is right next to the produce section and that is what I was looking at and thinking about. So I know my perspective is way off, but I really enjoy these doodles, even the odd perspective.

Saturday, July 18, 2009


I love a good thunderstorm. In 2002 I spent a month in New Mexico and saw incredible thunderstorms. I sat on a rooftop and watched a storm come in. You could see the lighting for miles. One of my dreams as a photographer is to storm chase. I have always been fascinated by storms and tornadoes. I realize that they cause destruction and I have to find a way to deal with that in my photography, but it doesn't stop me from wanting to witness this force of nature. In 2006 I filmed a storm with my digital image camera from my second story apartment kitchen window. The camera does not record sound so the music you hear is Counting Crows, Raining in Baltimore. The storm I filmed from last night is from the Flip Video that Ben gave me for Christmas. It captured the sound of the rain and the thunder. I walked all over the apartment to get different angles. I hope you enjoy them both!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


In October my boyfriend, Ben and I are moving from a one bedroom apartment to a house. We are excited about the move. It means we will have lots more room and I will have my own studio. I hate packing though. Being an artist, as many artists and people who live with artists know, we keep lots of stuff. We are collectors of many things. I am finding lots of stuff I forgot I had. Materials that I am now thinking about how I can use them. I won't be able to do much painting for the next few months, so I will be sketching, photographing and doing some small paper books. I keep thinking about how great my own space is going to be. A space all my own that isn't in a basement or just a table that I have to keep taking down if we have company. Not that we have lots of company in our small space. I love this apartment and I will miss it. It was a great transition for me when I got a divorced three years ago. But now I am ready for a new adventure. A house where we can have friends over and keep my art space as messy as I want and just close the door. As you can see Jake is keeping his eye on the packing. On to bigger and better things!

Friday, July 10, 2009


I have been thinking about time. Time that is passing by, being in the present time, and time that has yet to come. I often daydream what other events are occurring in the world the same time I am sitting on my couch. I will see an event that happened on the nightly news and think....I was doing this when that happened. I find time an interesting concept. The following artist statement makes me think I am not alone in thinking about the concept of time.

"Every day events transpire of which we are not aware. Our awareness of time is only relative to what we see about us. We get up in the morning with our minds only on a shower to wake up, the homework we didn't do, or the cup of coffee that is going to get us through the day. We give no thought to the lovers who just met, the old man who finally passed away, or the baby girl just born. In one instant, an infinite number of events occur. Most are a mystery; the few we recognize enrich our lives." - John Hernandez Time/Motion

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Welcome to my Blog!

It is my belief that art cannot be created in a vacuum. Artists need to collaborate and teach the benefits of being creative. It doesn't always have to be about the final product. It is important and beneficial to experience the process of creating.

Art and creating need to be more accessible and affordable to the public. The Do It Yourself (DIY) movement and its artist have known this all along. Art does not just have to be shown in galleries or museums. It can be found at fairs, in restaurants and on the walls of a city.

It is my intention with this blog to explore the creative process with a flow of ideas, highlighting other blogs, and introducing artists and their projects. I want to collaborate with other artists, host exchanges and curate exhibitions.

"Art must come down to the individual; what stirs your soul, what moves your spirit, what ignites your passion?"
- Durandal

I want to know. Drop me an e-mail!