Monday, April 5, 2010

trying new things...

collage + acrylic painting
4" x 6"

I want to learn how to knit. Socks, specifically. I also want to try painting with pastels. How many different artistic expressions can I do? Will I ever arrive at a technique or medium that will be "it", the ONE thing that I do from then on? No. Is that OK? Yes. It's taken me 54 years to answer that question yes. Over the years I've tried all kinds of arts and crafts-

watercolor painting
oil painting
drawing and colored pencils
paper collage
digital collage, computer art
fabric collage
polymer clay
mixed media
acrylic painting
sewing (quilting and clothes making)
fabric painting
fabric transfers, paper transfers
doll house making
doll making
rubber stamping
greeting cards
altered art, altered books

Add to this my love of writing and my love of cooking and that is a lot of interests!
And I love them all. I think I am good at most of them. I don't say that in a bragging way; I mean to say that I think that I do have artistic talent and that I love all of the arts and crafts. For a long time I've put myself down for this diversity. No more. I have finally given myself permission to be an artist- an artist of many mediums. I am an artist of many mediums, not JUST watercolor or collage or colored pencil. Lucky Me!

A wise man once taught me that sometimes all I need to do is the look at the big ball of wax from a different point of view. Instead of looking at my varied artistic interests as a weakness, as a bad thing (read: jack-of-all-trades, master of none), I now see it as a gift. Part of my very being is my insatiable curiosity. I have always been curious about the world around me. It has dawned on me that this variety of artistic endeavors is an extension of my basic curiosity, it stands to reason that I would try different arts, be curious about different techniques. I just have that kind of brain- I want to know, learn, look, see, experience. To ONLY paint watercolors or to ONLY do paper collage would be far too confining for me.

I have an acquaintance who is a very successfully professional artist. Her pieces sell for thousands of dollars. She is held captive to her medium. It's what she is known for, it's all she sells to the public. I happen to know that in secret she is branching out, trying different techniques than what she is known for. At the end of her work day creating her art she sells, she secretly plays at new techniques, for fun. She doesn't want anyone to know, so she does this privately. I think she holds that same mistaken belief that it is a weakness to be diverse in art. Many in the art world hold to that same belief.

No more, not me. I am an artist and as such, express what I want to say in many ways. And I am lucky to be able to do this. I am blessed to have the ability, curiosity and the time to do so.


Amelia said...

I am exactly the same and was told it would either go in my favour or against me that I could turn my hand to many art techniques! I love it too, and to be honest can't help it. if the urge takes, I would like to try!

I am now sharing this diversity with others as part of my experimental art e-course and because people have signed up for the diverse lesson offerings, I feel there must be 'something' there!

Keep busy and happy making, I love the piece at the top!


Jingle said...

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this. I have been struggling with this because I am interested in so very many things! I have been thinking about selling (as projects are beginning to pile up) and I am so afraid that I won't be successful unless I always do the same type of pieces. I know I can't stick to just one thing. I think I will just do what makes me happy and if it sells and makes someone else happy, that is great, if not, I am still left happy to have created it. Does that make sense?

Collage Picture Frames said...

I say Create It, I don't think it matters what medium you use as long as you are creating and enjoying the things you make.

I know what you are saying though when it comes to marketing your art, maybe sticking to one particular product would be easier to sell.

Good Luck,
Cheers for sharing your art,