Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Tutus and the joy of giving
This is my friend Megan Sherman from Carmel Valley who came to visit me last Saturday to pick up her painting I made for her birthday. I was so excited to see her reaction because she hadn't even had a glimpse of it and I knew she'd be surprised with the overall piece. She screamed and cried, this was exactly the reaction I was hoping for! What surprised her most was the background, as I placed her twirling in the hills of Carmel Valley. It was a magical moment for both of us, me for seeing how grateful and happy it made her and her for receiving such a wonderful gift. I told her it was as wonderful to give her the painting as it was for her to receive it and it's true. It made me think about art and painting and that giving my art is the best gift I can give. It is solely my own creation and to make something that brings such joy to others is the best reward I can get. A few bucks doesn't hurt either but this WAS a birthday present so it doesn't apply! She and I hiked on Sunday and talked about life and I cherish the time we spend together as it's rare. When she left on Sunday she carefully put her masterpiece in the car assuring me she'd tell me where she put it once she got home. It's hanging in the front room of her house and the whole family loves it, I am so pleased to hear this. I can't wait to visit and see it there. This is precisely why I love to paint. I love to capture a moment, a feeling and preserve it forever. It's like a photograph but even more personal as it's an interpretation of that moment. My studio mate Bob said, "Carrie these paintings of ours will live long after we're gone" and I love that. I love that I am leaving my mark and that maybe someday one of my paintings will be at a flea market and someone will buy it , and perhaps they'll even look up my name. That's something I never even thought of until Bob pointed it out. In some small way I am leaving an indelible mark through my art and I am honored to call myself an "artist". It is a title I could not own until recently. I felt to call myself an artist meant I had to be accomplished, earning money and showing in galleries. That was my insecurity and as art is so personal it's scary to put oneself out there and say "this is what I can do" for others to judge. Now I am more comfortable with that as I am more comfortable with myself. I am me and I won't appeal to everyone just as my art won't appeal to everyone. Some like me, some don't, some like what I paint, others don't. I don't like everyone I meet, or all art I see so it makes sense. What I am finding is there are some who do like me and my art and that's plenty! If even one person is happy with it that's a success, but my biggest critic is me. I am not very kind to myself when it comes to my art. I always want to be better and I can zoom in on the flaws of a piece before I see the successful parts. But in the same breath I guess I'm maturing too as I see this as just a natural part of being an artist. I push through it and keep at it, this is how I will improve and this is how I grow. I love that painting will always be a challenging venue and an ongoing learning process. For now I will be developing my various series including tutus, trucks and flowers. Perhaps I need to put these all together.......aha, I love it!
Posted by Carrie Clayden at 10:34 AM