I do Art

February 23, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

I Do Art

by Barbara Torke

    Every day I wake up, get out of bed, and do art.

    This makes my day go better. It makes me organize. It gets rid of those niggly worries awakened to at dawn or three a.m.

    For years I did Julia Cameron’s Artist Way writing. I used collegiate notebooks and filled them with page after page of thoughts, curses and  trivia. I’d wake up, get out of bed and write. When Dale came along I found this difficult. 

    I still don’t know how working people, or coupled people, keep a creative mind set going  and make a living, other than commercial 9-5 work. For me, art is multi-layered. Much of it is the illustration of observations, the capturing of moments and activities, and the investigation of emotion and materials. This I can process. This I can do. It’s the creative stuff that I find difficult. The dangerous experimentation that might frighten me - or some one else - and often does. Dale is supportive. I have learned how to seize my day. 

    The more I paint, the more I see these levels. There are times I can paint and carry on a conversation with other people at the same time. There are times I can instruct, and there are times I can ignore whatever is going on around me. But there are also times when I want to keep the whole experience private. Then amidst that, there are those times I never want to share, and those I always want to share. There is a gestation period. There is also a fermentation period. Sometimes art must ripen, other times rot. 

    When I get up and sit at my desk now, at this time in my life, I expose my day to those parts of my being at a variety of levels. I explore and jiggle a lot of my brain cells around to fall into ordinariness, or more probably - reality. 

    Writing journal pages, I found I could never re-read (bad penmanship - incomplete thought sequences) when I returned to it later. I know I had some ideas I wanted to pursue, but often couldn’t find them - or read them -or understand them. I also took a quick look at the possibility of someone finding  these incomplete and sometimes nasty, boring pages and saying OMG. 

REGALREGALTombow pens drawing on Robert Bateman sketchbook. Regal watercololor marker 10"x8"

have changed the Artist’s Way of journaling to a less internal, less angry, more accepting style. The visceral is sometimes still dark and slimy but less abrasive. All writing and painting is open to interpretation. In fact, everything I put out into the world (including the way I dress, speak, stand, communicate) is open to interpretation. Not one person in the world will understand me in the same way as any one other person in the world will. I am a part of this ungodly awkward group of people known as humanity - and of every other animal, object, plant and piece of gravel in it. Including stardust. Poetry, painting, collage present flashes of my persona. 

    There’s not that hidden elusive ‘’What is she thinking?” element. 

    The only person I can truly be guaranteed to please, then, is myself.

    I get up in the morning, brush my teeth, and sit down at my desk. And do art.

    I do a drawing with markers, pen, pencil, or paint.

    I write a poem, a short essay, or a saying.

    I cut apart, or use objects i’ve found, or that matter to me, and make a small collage.

    Sometimes I do a very small pastel (an Artist Trading Card size  - 2.5 x 3.5 inches)

    Every Day. Sometimes twice. 

    Some days it takes an hour. Sometimes two. Sometimes 20 minutes. 

    But I do art. TAOS MOUNTAINTAOS MOUNTAINArtist Trading Card: pastel painting 2.5x3.5, on art spectrum of Taos Mountain, Taos New Mexico. Taos Mountain, pastel ATC 2.5"x3.5" 391. SPARKY391. SPARKYSparky had a hard time of it. He was a stray I adopted, Some Turkish van in his heritage. He lost an eye due to an abscess, had diabetes and asthma. With shots and care he lived for a happy 12 years and was adored. 3"x5" collage. Sparky 3"x5" collage 


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