Annual routines break the daily routine and with any luck our imagination and ideas stir. There is something about the anticipation and the efforts of the holiday season that bends its way to the “let down” and then the clean slate of the New Year. What’s old can be new again. This is my cheesy way of saying we are going to repeat some favorite exercises right off the bat.
Not to act as philosopher, but to steal from one of the best, here are two quotes from Joseph Campbell to twist into art-making and ponder how they may apply:
“When we quit thinking primarily about ourselves and our own self-preservation, we undergo a truly heroic transformation of consciousness.”
“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”
Be ready to have a “transformation” of, at the least, expectation, and be ready to accept the creation that is “waiting for us”.
Our exercise will involve the unexpected and the unplanned. But you will need a SUBJECT. (Make it something that you feel a connection to, but avoid anything that is simply figure and ground–it is too hard to “transform”.) You may use either a fresh surface or an “underpainting”. If you are working on something that you want to further develop and explore, save it for another time.
If you don’t have a subject, come early enough to find or build one. Reflect on the thoughts discussed when we talked about choosing a subject. (That blog post can be found on the column to the right.)
Bring everything except a sense of control of what you are going to paint.