I haven't been making art all that long. If you think about it, when I finally settled here in Vermont and got a studio apt. the end of summer in '04 I had nothing but some paper and pens that I brought with me. I started collecting stuff rather rapidly. I found a place in Burlington I could get puzzles for 25¢ a box. I've been going there the last 2 years and have literally gotten hundreds of boxes. I even considered making an installation out of all the boxes but my work area started piling up to the ceiling with them and I caved in and took them to be recycled. I don't buy as many puzzles right now since I have untold bags filled with them as well as a shelf of put together puzzles; perhaps one day when I am more stable in where I live I can be a complete fool and surround myself with puzzles galore. There are many more things I plan on doing with puzzles, I can never have enough!

Its been almost four months since I made a puzzle mask, not long considering I've since made many clocks, but longer than I would like. I seem to be stymied right now and its starting to get to me. My friend and I care take & the house has been busier this year with people staying, having to deal with a painter completely repainting everything...and a hellaceous winter where I had to shovel for dear life to get out the door! Spring is coming and I find myself getting nervous, that is when the owners all come for the summer and the noise level reaches new heights each time they come here (it matches the growth spurt of the kids and animals). I think what drives me to the brink of despair at times is the fact that I know I haven't reached my potential. I know there is much more to be done and it takes so much for me to get into that space of allowing it to happen. It is very frustrating, especially when a voice in my head tells me that there are plenty of other artists out there who do more with less. Less space, less time etc. But I suppose for every artist there are as many personalities and abilities to get the job done. So far it is obvious to me that I have yet to understand my process and relax enough to trust. Sometimes I honestly feel like I will never make anything again. I feel like I will never get into that space...that place that magically happens when it chooses and not when I scream for it. Why do I have to be completely alone and have days to myself to really get something good going?When I am not making art I really feel dead. I get moody and afraid. Sounds ridiculous to say it. But I feel empty. I have struggled since I can remember with my purpose and point in life, it wasn't until I started making art that I felt like I had a hold of something that made sense. Art feels like a tender anchor to life. It is my braille. It is how I communicate something that has no other way to escape from me. I used to feel that way at times when I was a massage therapist, probably because the dance of my hands to the music was a tiny portal of escape for any creativity that I had.

So this is where my head is at. If I don't post for a few days you know I'm out howling at the moon.


BlueJude said...

Potential? Lost? More To Do? Who Am I/ Where Am I going With My Art? When will I settle into one particular style? Yes, these are all questions I ask myself too. Can I howl with you?!

Daniel Sroka said...

OK, go and get yourself a copy of Art and Fear by Ted Orland, pronto. This isn't some flakey self-help book full or uselessly happy affirmations. It's a book by a working artist about, well, art and fear. About dispelling the myths surrounding the creation of art (e.g. "other artists have no problem being inspired"). It's practical, grounded, and insightful. Go now. Do it!

Self Taught Artist said...

book orderd

i felt like a drill sargent just yelled in my ear that I wasn't standing up straight. thanks for the order to order the book - I appreciate it daniel. for all you lurkers...THIS is exactly why I want to blog. feedback and help and other artists/writers giving a little boost when needed.

Misplaced said...

Powerful post- writing really tugs at the emotions when it is raw and unfiltered like this. Didn't we have a back and forth of fear being a corresive thread- it makes it easier to realize that most everyone feels fear and everyone feels uniinspired and everyone feels it easier for everyone else.

Great post- I have a great mental picture of all the puzzle pieces- what if all the puzzles pieces toppled over. Death by too many puzzles- now there's something to be afraid of.

Self Taught Artist said...

yep, the thread continues misplaced...your turn to write.

wow, I never thought about the possibility of a puzzles pulverizing me to my death. for some reason I dont fear that...that amuses me!