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  • Writer's pictureCarolyn Land

How We Approach It

“For art and joy go together, with bold openness, and high head, and ready hand – fearing naught, and dreading no exposure.”               James Abbot McNeill Whistler

I have been fortunate during this time of “social distancing” to have had my son and his family with us. That included Daxton my 17-month-old grandson…well 14 months when they arrived from NYC in January. Watching him grow and experience the world has been a wonderful experience for me!

If you want to witness a natural display of a sense of wonder, just observe a child. A child’s whole world is viewed through the eyes of wonder and excitement. They make no judgments of why things are so, but just observe in awe, and view life through innocence, purity, and curiosity.

Walk in the Woods

Walk in the Woods    Fiber Collage

It is sort of like we should be when we approach our art: open to learn, full of joy and wonder, and willing to accept what we put down on paper as something special, without constant self judgement.

Yes, there does come a point when we must look at our work and think about the compositional parts and make tweaks here and there. But when we start a piece it should be with that curiosity of what will come out.

Ultimately, my hope is to amaze myself.  The anticipation of discovering new possibilities is my greatest joy”.         Jerry Uelsmaann 

All of life is an adventure. You start the day you are born and travel a winding road until your last day. You never know what may await you around the next bend. Look at us now! Would we have imagined this a year ago?

Creating art is much the same way. It does not matter how much we plan our next piece, there is no guarantee it will turn out the way we meant it to. Happy accidents happen all the time, and successful artists recognize them and capitalize on them, or you play with it until it feels right.

An adventurous spirit which is filled with wonder is a great asset if we want to explore new subjects or themes,  tackle a familiar subject in a different way, or even when a well-planned painting or drawing takes an unexpected turn and we end up outside our creative comfort zone. A sense of childlike adventure should keep us moving forward, always trying new things.

My HUB class, “Explore Your Creativity”, is an exciting group who explore different mediums openly and share their ideas and boost each other up. I admire the fact that they are sticking together through this period of isolation and sharing their work via email and responding to each other. Below are some pieces they have been working on.

Donna Bradley Collage

Janice Rous  Acrylic paintings.  Reflections on a dance class.

Paula Pascucci  Pastel over a textured surface.

Margaret Billups     Watercolors

Suzi Hahn   Alcohol Ink on canvas.

Continue creating.  It brings joy to your life and gives joy to others.  Stay safe.  Carolyn

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