Thursday, August 17, 2017

Commitment in Life and Art





My son was married two weeks ago. It was a joyful, beautiful wedding. He's 42. It's taken him a long time to find the love of his life. But he waited. And they found each other.

And the week before that, I attended the 50th wedding anniversary of old friends. A heart-touching celebration.




I think of commitment when I think of these two events so closely connected in time. Only I think of my commitment to being an artist. I've been pulled out of my studio this past 7 months because I've been healing from two knee replacement surgeries. It's difficult enough to get back into the studio after a vacation or a brief illness but after a 7 month hiatus, only working off and on, I find it agonizingly difficult to get back to work. It's a push-me, pull-you situation. I want to get in there and yet, when I do, I don't know what to do. Creative ideas start to spring forth the more you work. And they quickly dry up when you're not making work.

I've given students in my workshops the great advice to just get in there and play after a long hiatus. And it is great advice. Only it doesn't seem to be working for me just yet. When I can't seem to play, I just go into my studio and tidy up, move things around, rearrange stuff. Just be there.

But one thing I do know, is that I'm committed to making art. I know that I will get back in my studio. I know that the ideas that are percolating in my head will eventually come out.

So I decided to try to inspire myself with wise quotes:




OK, OK, OK, I'll begin.


10 comments:

  1. Love this post, Janice. Love your courage to post it. I know how you feel and am going through that very same state right now but have begun. Bless you. My love....

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    1. Dear Sylvia, Thanks so much for your words. Very much appreciated.

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  2. Am exactly where you are Janice. In the last 7 years it has been total disruption with extreme challenges regarding caregiving for ill family members ending in a hip replacement for myself in June. I don't know who I am anymore and cannot seem to settle into a routine of just working. Expectations
    Of myself are huge and I think that is the key. Also my life has altered in many ways so perhaps that is what the key is: be open to the change and play
    Who knows where it may lead...easier said than done....wishing you luck and empathy. Thank you for the post. Sharing is so hepful.

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    1. Oh I'm so sorry to hear of all your challenges with your family and your own hip replacement. Yes I can understand that you don't know who you are any more. It takes time to sort that out. Hoping you get back into the studio soon. Thanks for responding.

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  3. Janice, thank you for sharing. For me, "just be there" is the key, just being there in that studio environment where even if just tidying up, re-arranging, re-discovering, something
    will surface, sparking an urge to begin a new piece. What works for me is always having one piece in progress, for however long it takes...perhaps months, perhaps longer as life dictates...but it fulfills my need to be (and remain) in the process of making art

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  4. I too have been away from painting for an extended period of time - 2 years - due to several overwhelming circumstances in our family. Couldn't seem to get back into gear. Yesterday,though, I started tidying my studio, put down clean glass on my work table top, gathered some paint tubes that were scattered, unearthed 12 small blank panels that I forgot I had. Next week I am booked to give a painting demo at a historical site and I'm hopeful this will finally catapult me back into painting. Like you, I was baffled as to why I could not get started. Thank you for writing this post! I'm sure we both will be back on track very soon.

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    1. Hi Wendy, Thanks for your thoughts. I know from FB that you've had some health challenges in your life and in your family. That would certainly take you away from your studio. Glad to hear you are getting back at it! My best wishes.

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  5. Thank you Janice for sharing so much of yourself during what must be a challenging time. You are an artist in every pore of your being and so I look forward to your next works of art ❤️❤️❤️

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    1. Dear Sharon, Thanks for your kind words of encouragement!

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