April 19, 2008

Breakthrough

Just back from art class and I'd like to turn around and drive the 18.5 miles back and paint some more. I had a breakthrough this week! No pictures though, I forgot the camera. I worked on my bottle and made it look more like a curved bottle. I even added white highlights where the light hits it! Yaaay!!! It is so thrilling!

Then I left the bottle for another time and dove right into the stupid towel. I mean, frumpled towel. It's not the towel's fault that the person who lays it out every week won't make it flat. I couldn't decide what highlight colors to paint the towel and it's hills, and Weezy was helping other people, so I just started paintingggggg! Scary.

Finally, Weezy was walking by and I sort of whined her over. I told her I just wasn't sure what shades to paint the towel and asked her whiningly what I should do. She said, "Nothing! It's perfect, looks beautiful! The colors are perfect," and she turned and walked away.

Well, the highlights of my soul burst out through my head and flooded the city of Philadelphia for one whole second. I couldn't believe that the hunch I had followed - my OWN - worked! I didn't even know it was close to working, but Weezy doesn't say it's good if it isn't. It was then and there that I realized how artists can keep coming back to this creating thing. It's addictive. It's meditative. It's frustration and satisfaction mixed with a little linseed oil and turpenoid on a scrap of paper and picked up with a smooth brush by a shaky hand and applied to a patient canvas, waiting for the next dab of metamorphosis.

Painting is no different than writing. It has to be awkward and sometimes just plain wrong for a while until you see a light in the tunnel, then it's good for a while. You may go down a rabbit hole and get completely off course and muddy for a bit. Mud and disorientation, however, have a way of pointing to something better if you look long enough...and then begin walking.

1 comment:

Paul said...

Excellent last paragraph. Would have worked well as a first paragraph, too.