Hi! You came! This is what I want to say…

Hi!  You came!  This is what I want to say:

I love and have always loved drawing and creating and making marks, and hoped there was a time coming when I’d be able to sink my teeth in and really explore it all.  A few years ago that time came when a dear friend and I decided it was time to start, or restart, our creative engines and give that part of us more attention.  Among other things we signed up for classes and I spent a year “moving paint” as I would say, and creating yucky annoying canvases bristling with pointy bits of thick paint and muddy colours.  I always thought I was just about to ‘get it’ but almost every canvas I created sat and stared back at me like an awkward teenager, uncomfortable in itself and cranky and looking to me to see what I was going to do about it.

I plodded on, hopeful that even though the finished results were sketchy and not very good I was actually learning and processing and figuring it out in my head, or definitely somewhere other than in the hand holding my brush and creating these unfortunate messes!  I hoped that eventually I’d find that the time had helped me progress even if it was making me a little frustrated at the time.  Truly madly deeply frustrated!

When I started back to classes after a summer break it looked like it was going to be more of the same and I’d had it!  I both stamped my foot and put it down and decided ENOUGH!  Time to get on with it!  I started painting small objects and scenes … sushi, running shoes, fish … and painting often, and being very indulgent and gentle with myself.  Not trying to paint masterpieces, just trying to paint.

It felt and feels wonderful!  I started liking what I was doing better, a few of the paintings  started making it up on my wall (the test!), and my confidence grew a little bit. It feels like I’ve finally got a language I can talk in, and say what I want to say.  I know I have a long way to go, I’ve just barely started, but that feels exciting and I at least feel like I’ve got my coat on and am headed out the door.  That first year of painting I was wandering around the house looking for my keys.  Which actually happens a lot.

Almost every canvas I paint now teaches me so much, and my head is crammed with thoughts about what I want to try next.  Even the stinkers I paint teach me a lot, although I usually hide the evidence and paint over them fairly quickly.  I love whatever time I can find painting, get antsy if it’s been more than a few days, and shake my head at how fast my painting time goes past. Unbelievably fast. Sort of freakishly fast.  Sometimes I’ll have a late-in-the-day chai to help perk me up and instead of heading to bed I’ll head to the easel, where staying up late painting and making marks feels like a wickedly wonderful decadence.

This website (thank you Monika, you gorgeous goddess wizard) is full of paintings from the first “well that’s a bit better” to now, so sort of a mixed bag. I’m so enjoying having a place where what I’ve done can be.  I admire artists who are together enough to have formal philosophies and definite paths of exploration.  For now I’m bounding around trying a bit of a lot of things, finding my own style, learning buckets and having the time of my life.  Trying not to feel intimidated by how much there is to learn, and try, and figure out and think about.  Getting paint on my fingers.  Living the life! I hope this blog can reflect that a bit.  Thanks for taking a look!

Jennifer

I won’t talk so much next time. Promise!

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