So, my camera sucks, no more so, however, than my photographic skills – the result is two pictures of one work in progress entitled “Angel of Charity,” to be paired with a mirror-image-like painting entitled “Angel of Systemic Change.” Ha, I crack myself up (if no one else) 🙂
I have begun painting the mirror-image painting as well, but am only on my first layer of paint, so it’s not much to look at just yet. Charity, here, is the result of two layers of paint, and will receive at least a third layer before she is completed.
In one picture (the one with flash) you can see the textures of her dress and the colors are more true to life, however, b/c of all the hot spots the hair and wing are pretty much lost in a glow. In the other picture (one taken without flash) you can see some of the layers of color in her hair and wing, but the highlights in her dress are lost in shadow. The fun part about this picture on the right btw is that it does replicate something about how these colors seem to hum or glow in the light of my studio at night.
After taking these pictures last night, I took a moment to consider why these late night/ post painting photos are generally of such poor to mediocre quality. Maybe there would be a different outcome to these photos if I retook the pics in daylight . Or maybe if I had waited until the piece is finally dry the hot spots would not be as prominent (however, I find that some acrylic and oil paintings, even after dry can still be shiny and have hot spots in photos). Maybe the only quality outcome will come when I finally admit to myself that of all the visual arts, consistently good photography seems to be my least aquirable skill, and hire a professional to take the photographs for me!
As usual I can’t help thinking of this painting or these photographs as a metaphor of who I am, where I am. The cue I take from these photographs is that like this unfinished work, like these crappy pictures, I am also a work in progress. I mean, good God, who/what isn’t, right? But I am trying to be intentional this year, more so than usual, in not only recognizing the areas where I have let things slide “professionally”, but making a realistic plan for continued development. Here, I mean development beyond developing talent or conceptual ability. Rather, I intend to focus on the development of the things that too often you are not taught in school – those mundane things about how to market your work, and open up opportunities for the work and where it can take you. That means a lot of research, meetings, consultations, financial planning, networking – and making sure photographs of my work are beautiful. Frankly, I’d rather paint and talk to this computer, like I am doing now. Or go out to dinner, a movie, a play, … bowling, camping – really just about anything else! But the time has come to stop hiding behind my obstinate streak of introversion, tendency toward marketing/investment-cheap-skate-edness, and my aversion to the mundane over seeking out fun.
All of this career planning – something that of course makes good sense to do – brings me back to this subject of the mundane. You know, when I am creating something it feels exciting, new, anything but mundane, but when I am trying to do the things that need to be done in order to sell or market that creation, there is very little joy for me in that process, it is mundane and tedious.
Unfortunately the mundane things in life make everything else work. I am well aware that behind every ebullient adventure is a bunch of mundane crap. I would make a lousy ascetic. Even still, perhaps I need to find a way to have the joy of the ascetic. That joy of little things, small steps, and the routine.
I suppose this is really a matter of discipline. As one who does not like to be or feel controlled, discipline is a hard concept to embrace, and yet in creating there is also a discipline, and I excel in embracing it. Is this a change of perception? – to see the daily routine as also a creation, as surely every day is a creation in itself and part of the whole creation of a lifetime. So then, paying bills, and washing dishes, and balancing the checkbook, are in fact acts of creation simply because they are a part of living. Oh, I don’t know, such a boring (mundane) post!