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Come on Baby Light My Fire

Rediscovering My Love of Art




 

“Inspiration does exist, but it must find you working.”
~ Pablo Picasso

 

In my initial post, I shared that I always loved creating as a child – the blessing of being young and enjoying creating without giving it a second thought. As I got older, my interest in art came and went. I would look forward to trying a new medium or a new style, but that excitement quickly wore off. Once the thrill of attempting something new faded, or in many cases realizing that the medium or style was not for me, I quickly abandoned painting.

 

Passion can be lengthy and it can be fleeting. Like any relationship, it can have its highs and its lows, and my art and I experienced a rocky period of time – one where the motivation was not there. Part of it was other interests, but in hindsight it was also the frustration that I could not find a style to which I felt connected. For any creative, that can be toughest part – trying to find one’s voice. In some ways it is akin to wanting to be grown up but being stuck in an adolescent limbo, experimenting, but not figuring out who you really are.

 

Art is not for everyone, but everyone has a creative side. There is nothing wrong with recognizing that other interests are more important than creating. However, for those who want to find their way back to art – the journey can be a struggle. Equally so, for those starting out the process can be frustrating or daunting. So, how does one maintain or reignite the flames of creativity?




 

Experiment

 

The first step is to see what genre, media or style is for you. Whether it is dance, music, writing, photography, painting, cooking or any other creative medium there are so many disciplines within the broader category. The only way to discover your interest is to try the various options.

 

Take Risks and Make Mistakes

 

We have been conditioned to strive for excellence and in many cases perfection. What is the perfect piece of art and who makes that decision? The beauty of art is in the originality and creativity to try something different, something out of your comfort zone.

 

Find your Purpose

 

Why are you creating? Is it to raise awareness of an issue? Is it to help you heal from a difficult time? Are you using it as a way to decompress from the intensity of day-to-day life? Whatever the reason, create what moves you.

 

Reconnect with Your Inner Younger Self

 

I mentioned earlier that children are full of wonder and curiosity. As we grow older, many of us get set in our ways. We find our comfort zone and stay within its walls. Find your inner “wildhood” and use creativity as a tool for personal growth and development.

 

Have Fun

 

This may be the toughest goal of all. Having high expectations, being a perfectionist, or creating for the sole purpose of becoming famous or making a living in the arts can drain one’s ability to enjoy the process. Do not worry about what others think – create for you. Stay true to who you are and your muses.

 

Mix it Up

 

Pablo Picasso is best known for his cubist works, but prior to that he had his Blue and Rose periods. Artists are often associated with a certain style or genre but the path to get there is a process. It is also important to recognize that once one finds their style, they may get bored, as what inspires a person may change over time. Do not be afraid to go back to experimenting with something new, even if people expect a certain style from you.




 

My Experience

 

How does the above advice apply to my journey? 1) Experiment: When I was younger, I tried watercolour and hated it. I tried oils and could not stand them. While I enjoyed sketching, I felt it was lacking something. I tried painting nature scenes but that was not for me. It took years to find my style. Voice and technique. 2) Take Risks and Make Mistakes: I used to sketch out every detail in my paintings – the perfectionist in me. Essentially it became a paint by number. Now I let the piece develop organically – and yes, I make mistakes. Sometimes they add beauty to the work, other times I have to fix them. It is part of the process. It is also how I grow and refine my style. 3) Find Your Purpose: I would recreate other artist works that I liked, especially Romero Britto and Jason Alexander (not the Seinfeld actor). Both artists are pop artists who use bright colours and patterns in their work. While it allowed me to develop my artistic skills, I was not invested in that style. I love rock music which is why I focus on iconic figures from the industry. 4) Reconnect with Your Inner Younger Self: It took me a long time to make time for creating. Like so many I was very invested and busy with my career. Getting back to creating has given me renewed energy and curiosity. It forced me to address explore and experiment. 5) Have Fun: When I started painting again, I had lofty goals – sell my work, be represented by galleries, and so on. I enjoy doing shows, I am grateful for being featured in magazines and I am humbled by and appreciative of the collectors who own my work, but I have also had a lot of rejections. What I learned is that I paint for me, and I paint because I enjoy it. 6) Mix it Up: While most of my works are rock music inspired, I like to branch out every now and then. I have a few different series on the drawing board – when the time is right, I am going to give the new subject matter a go. For me I want to stay fresh and continually challenge myself as an artist. Even when painting rock portraits, my style has evolved and changes. Develop a signature look but keep it fresh.

 

I am so grateful that I have found my way back to painting. I am loving the artist life and all that come with it. I hope that I have inspired you to try something new or to find the time for an interest that you once really enjoyed. I would love to hear your stories about a passion that you have either rediscovered or a new one in which you are immersed.

 

If you have topics, you want to learn about, please feel free to contact me. I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas.

 

Thanks for reading. Stay creative! Rock your day with everything that you do!


Cheers,


Al

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