VIEW IN MY ROOM
Painting, Watercolor on Paper
Size: 12 W x 16 H x 0.1 D in
The star of this painting is a vaguely geometric shape with an outline of soft pearlescent watercolor and thick layers of vivid oil pastels. The pastels were pulled beyond the border in places to create a sense of rock-and-roll energy and play. The watercolor background mirrors the rawness of the shapes with purposely imperfect brushstrokes in a muted grey to contrast with the brilliance of the shape. The piece is also part of my “Origins” series—precursors to paintings I created for my first solo show.
Painting:Watercolor on Paper
Size:12 W x 16 H x 0.1 D in
Ready to Hang:No
I have been a full-time creative for more than 25 years. While my creativity was primary expressed in my career as writer, creative director and creativity consultant, the pandemic reignited my visual art practice. I began attending virtual classes and workshops to find new ideas and techniques to experiment with, as well as more closely studying art that consistently captures my curiosity—works by Mark Rothko, Lee Krasner, and more recently, Mary Weatherford. After a period of study, I was inspired by a couple of coaches (and the fearlessness of the Gen Z young adults in my life), to seek opportunities for sharing my recent work with wider audiences. And it’s such a delight that my work is already in a handful of private collections within the United States. The subject and style of my work has been sparked by the musings typical of midlife, when many of us begin questioning or shedding ideas we once took for granted—ideas about what life can be, who we are, and our place in the world. In fact, I have spent most of my 40s wrestling with the commonly held beliefs that struggle and hardship are prerequisites for innovation and creative breakthroughs; that great success cannot happen without back-breaking sacrifices. While it is understandable for any of us to want to assign deeper meaning to the trials we’ve experienced in our lives, I now reject the idea that discomfort and achievement are mutually exclusive. I have been learning that working and creating from a place of calm and comfort can be even more powerful. Feelings of safety and security can activate the imagination, launching something compelling and new. And personally, I have seen that the work I create when buoyed by happiness ends up being the most intriguing work I do. This counterpoint to conventional wisdom is something I’ve been exploring in my paintings—using the soft, soothing appearance of watercolor washes and glazes as a foundation for untamed, dynamic artistic experimentation. I allow each piece to be propelled by serenity rather than rebelling against it. I feel liberated to follow my curiosity, looking for new ways of making marks and adding depth with additional layers of watercolor, oil pastel, ink, or occasionally acrylic. Ultimately, my hope is that the peaceful curiosity that inspires my work will extend to the viewer, nudging them to consider the connections between steadfast calm and transformative experimentation.
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