This is my current screen saver picture. I took this picture when I was camping in Vermont and didn't even know that this is where I would finally stop and start to make art. I was camping in the Green Mountains and on my 2nd or 3rd day saw this house and felt like I had just found an exotic dying creature. I'm always a little thrilled when I see this picture. Unfortunately I only had a 3 mega pixel camera and didn't know I would be making art, let alone art with photography. This house is long gone but I have the image and it does print out as an 8x10 so it's there when I want it.
So I've been walking a fair amount in nature, thinking about forgetting my own personal limitations, what do I want? I wonder about artists and their inspiration and how they do what they do. I need to walk in nature on a weekly basis, daily when I'm at the top of my game. I don't get inspiration from nature as much as I get a sense of having meditated. Taking a bath in complete darkness also does it. My mind sends me flashes of how I could do something or even what I could do. I'm not consciously thinking about art and then suddenly, like one of those nanosecond subliminal messages you hear about being flashed at some unsuspecting viewer, I get a flash and then I know what to do. A problem is solved and I can resume my work. I guess that is inspiration but not in the way one thinks. Looking at a flower or trees never infuses me with direct ideas for art making. I don't even know where my ideas come from.
So I know I need to live where I can easily/always access getting away and walking on a path. I did it in Arizona and that winter I lived in Minneapolis. I do it here. Where ever else I go I have to live very close to trails.
In an ideal world I would have a studio built on the same land I live on. If I lived in an artists loft I would have a hard time lugging scrap in. And where and how would I wash it? Where and how would I cut metal and wood? Who could stand the dirt and noise? I also realized I'm not the kind of artist who wants to have a place to go to. I work a little and go do something else. Things need to 'bake'. They need to sit and rise and rest while I get my mind wrapped around it. I like popping into my studio across the stairway hallway and doing something then popping out and exercising or cooking or whatever. I like being close to my work at all times as I never know when the ideas will come and the desire to do will overpower me.
So I have the two things I need. My work is here and I live a stone's throw from miles and miles of trails. It isn't perfect but I guess every day I have to accept that for someone who has nothing I have a lot.
I'm picking tod up tonight. I am also grateful that I have someone who loves my art and I can share what I'm doing and even bounce ideas off of or borrow two extra biceps when I can't do something on my own. For as much as I like being alone, I couldn't ask for a better friend to share my life and my art with. After all, making art is a two part deal for me. There is the doing and then the sharing. If I made all of this and no one ever saw it the energy would turn against itself and go bad. So for as much as I feel I'm going to go crazy if things don't change, I do recognize what I have.