I was just looking at some of my abstract artworks and I noticed that many of them have a wavy turbulent sea theme. That got me thinking about why I create so many pieces that have a tossed and unsettled stormy vibe.
Okay, right here I could get deep and spiritual and say it is a reflection of my inner feelings brought on by the instability of my surroundings in the world, but that doesn’t explain the pieces I created long ago when things were relatively peaceful in my life. I could also say it was a subconcious inner longing for the sea, but that is far from the truth since I am from Colorado and the beaches I grew up with were the rocky shores of cold mountain lakes.
Then I rememebered a time in my past when I was working as a laundry mat attendant and we had those huge triple loader washing machines that have a round window in the front and you can see the colorful clothing being tossed about in the soapy sudsy water. I recall wishing I could capture those kind of scenes with a camera or paints, and all of a sudden, now I know why I tend to create those kind of abstracts over and over again. It is my way of trying to recreate those images from my memory. Not very romantic, I know, but it was kind of surprising to realize it while I was musing.
At the moment winter is setting in where I live. The leaves are drying up and blowing away, the garden is frozen and dead. It is cold inside and out and inspiration seems to have gone with the leaves. As I sit here bundled up in front of my blank computer screen trying to drum up some inspiration to create more artwork, all I can think about is how cold my toes are and how blank my mind is.
So where do we find inspiration on the bleak blah days like this? Sometimes I like to visit online art museums and libraries to look for old vintage art. That never fails to get my creative juices flowing.
Also, and I hope it won’t sound crazy, but sometimes I just go back over my own artwork because most of the time when I am creating a piece of artwork, I have more than one idea going on in my head. Since I can only follow one path at a time, when I go back and revist some of my older work it jogs my memory of the path not taken and I can sometimes explore that avenue as well.
Examples of this kind of thing can be seen in my portfolio where there is more than one style of art made with the same image. Below is an example of two different styles of art I created using one of my floral photographs as a starting point. I hope this post helps you find new ways of getting inspired when you are feeling empty and blank by reviewing your own artwork and revamping it into totally new pieces of art that might reach a new audience you wouldn’t have appealed to before.
There is a very real struggle that goes on in the life of a visual artist. That struggle is between creating and promoting. For instance, I know that if I want to sell my art I need a promoter and since I can’t pay someone to do it for me then I must be my own promoter. And in the world of online art sales one of the most touted ways to do that is to blog about your art and life as an artist.
Here is where the struggle comes in. Many visual artists are introverts who have a hard time writing about anything and especially their own art and life.
We generally don’t want to draw attention to ourselves and will avoid having the spotlight. However if we ever intend to sell any art we must get it out there in front of potential buyers and collectors.
Ah, the struggle is real, especially for me personally. So with this post I just wanted to put that out there for the reader in the hopes that you will have patience with artists like me who go long periods of time without a new blog or social media post.
I am a lover of history and nostalgia and much of my work reflects that love. This is a piece I created of a village that has a definite historic flavor and I tried to make it feel like an impressionist style even though my tools are entirely digital. I am always striving to make digital art that doesn’t look digital. I’ve included the description I wrote to go with this image on the day I posted it to my website because I was feeling the role of a storyteller that day and I hope you enjoy reading it.
It goes like this…
“An impressionist style view of a medieval village as seen from a hill overlooking the town center. There is a tall spire on the cathedral dominating the other smaller houses and buildings with their charming red rooftops. The community sprawls out over the rolling green fields and hills to a range of mountains in the distance.
In your imagination zoom into the center of the bustling main street and hear the sounds of hawkers trying to lure you to buy their goods and carriage wheels clattering on the cobblestone pavement. Smell the aromas of flowers and street vendors cooking meat on spits and bread baking and fresh horse manure from the horse drawn buggies and coaches.
Feel the excitement of a day at the town market in the late afternoon as things wind up for the last of daylight, everyone preparing to close up shop and go home. A quick look at the cloudy sky seems to warn of coming showers. Time to find a bed for the night…”
Autumn is a Lady is a modern contemporary abstract piece I recently created and when I was finished the title jumped out at me. I remember thinking what a great book cover it would make and how if I were a writer, I would write a novel of the same name just so I could put this art on the cover.
It is available for purchase in many print formats at my website.
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