Not creating or living by “the rules”

A fellow artist approached me about my work yesterday. She told me that she could not believe how much my skill has grown in the past few months. She observed (according to her) that my work has grown more in the past few months than hers has in years. Her biggest frustration was that she has an arts education and I am self-taught.

I don’t know if I agree that my work has grown that much in the past few months. However, I do understand what she is observing. I made it my goal in the past few months to stop trying to paint by the rules. Diego Rivera once said, “If you are an artist, you paint because you have to”. I relate so much with that statement. I paint because I have to. I can often be blocked by the self-imposing rules of creating a “body of work”. I struggle to keep with one style or technique that “defines” me as an artist. It hinders me.
I decided to give up on the rules. I want to play. I want to explore. I want to grow. Isn’t that what art and life is about after all? How do you learn anything if you never try something new? Suddenly I am learning new skills. I’m becoming more comfortable with myself, my work, and really excited to try new ideas and new techniques without worrying about breaking some rule.

I’ve never been very good at living by a preset of rules; why should I create by them?

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About strokeofred

I am from Kansas and I have traveled all over the world. I am an artist, and I have a business brain. I love skirts and tennis shoes. I like to get dirty and ride motorcycles. I am sensitive and I can be mean. I love nature, and believe in protecting it. I love to laugh, and feel better after a good cry. I can be stubborn and impatient. I am constantly growing. I am open and free. I look to be inspired and love to inspire. I play guitar and secretly want to play drums. I have a puppy that brings me great joy. I love hugs, cuddling, holding hands...and wrestling. I love the mountains and the beach. I have to make a pilgrimage to the ocean at least twice a year to balance myself. I believe in balance in all things. Traveling is a passion, and meeting interesting people from all over the world is the perk! I have small town values, and big city dreams. I love beer, hate wine. I believe that what you put out comes back. I believe and live by the belief of treating others like you want to be treated. I enjoy stimulating conversation, and a good sense of humor. Caffeine is my drug of choice, and coffee over chess or good conversation is my luxury. I am strong but sometimes feel small. I strive to be my authentic me.
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