Tuesday, June 27, 2006

So darn sick of coding

What's an artist doing struggling with style sheets, iframes, and include files?

The usual.

Unless you're super-lucky or independently wealthy, you've had to do something that had absolutely nothing to do with art, for your art. Mailing postcards, making phone calls for leads, overhauling your website. I very grudgingly wear many, many hats in order to take my artwork to a higher level.

Is it frustrating? It's maddening. Especially for a perfectionist like me.

Last night, I called my mom to ask her to please pray for me, for my frustration, for my desire to defenestrate my computer, for my ineptitude to smack this code into shape. I had spent three hours on a few incredibly maddening lines of code and had just about had it. (Note: I make webpages all day, I got an Outstanding on the CSS class I just finished. But I am not a coder.)

So I hung up the phone and went to the computer, flopped into the chair, and scrolled up the offending lines. And the answer to solve it came to me immediately. And it was right!

The moral of this story: Do what you have to do to make your art outstanding. And when you're getting bogged down in the details, pray hard and go paint something.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

'sicles and stars

I've been sitting here, eating my homemade popsicle, looking over what's to be my new website. (Ohhhhhhhh, just you wait.) I've spent days going through all my old sketchbooks, unearthing old treasures of paintings that I had an issue with at the time but now find new life in - I'm overhauling the whole site, portfolio included.

When I started reviewing and assembling the images, at first I thought - ugh. Too many styles, too many directions to go in. Too many different looks, sizes, concepts. Nothing would match.

But the more time I spent tagging my sketchbooks with pink post-its and scanning in my favorites, the more I found that those - "my favorites" - all really did go together. Similar palettes. Common themes. And hopefully, the same spark that might cause someone to smile or sigh runs through them all as well. Plus, they just make me happy. And isn't that the whole point?

Try it: take a quiet afternoon and go through your old sketchbooks, the paintings you did in school, the ones rolled up in the back of the closet. Look at the ones that frustrated the heck out of you at the time and see if they still do, or if you have the answer in you to complete them now.

Take a favorite picture out - old or new - and hang it up. Celebrate your different styles, your attempts at something new. Give yourself permission to let old artwork go if it doesn't speak to you any more. Enjoy looking at your work as a collection and not just a bunch of separate pictures.

Let your own artwork make you happy.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Every day: Thirty-three

every day: thirty-three

31 days, 35+ paintings (I didn't even post them all!). All in all, I'm glad I followed through with what I said I'd do, but I would never do it again. It became a chore, and I spent time scanning, posting, and painting things I really didn't want to, instead of working on something that would take more than one night. If I did do it again, it would be to paint every day, not to make a painting for each day.

Don't look for too many posts for a while - I'm cleaning house (online) and redecorating (ditto). Hopefully the new site will be live sometime mid-June. Thanks to everyone who came along for the ride. :)