Monday, June 06, 2016


A lot of what I do as an artist looks like I'm doing nothing. (I know I've said this before.) To the keen-eyed observer or possibly even one not-so-keen-eyed, I'm just pottering about with paint and pieces of paper, maybe some crayons, or colored markers. An idea came across my radar recently, found here, of using a magazine to create a painted journal and I thought I'd give it whirl. Do I need another book? Not really. Am I simply adding to the pile of unfinished books and projects lying about? Pretty much.

Well, then, why do it at all?

I remember being asked bizarre questions by art professors in the halls of Art Academia. Why did I chose that color? Why would I put that there? What made me want to do it that way? These questions confused me. And rarely was there ever a reasonable answer from me. How could there possibly be a "reasonable" response? I mean, I'm an artist. Don't we do things on whimsy? Don't we want to see what would happen if we tried something untried? Like mixing oil paints with acrylics or melting crayons onto cardboard and scratching through the melted mess (that actually sounds interesting). Isn't it our job to experiment, push the occasional envelope, trod the untrodden path?

During critiques, we were required to come up with some kind of a reasonable response to something done without reason. Most times, I wanted to say, Because I f*cking felt like it! I was never comfortable explaining myself (which I suppose was part of the lesson, but it's one I still don't get).

This is how Art works. It is an Artist's job to play. Sometimes to do Nothing. (Disclaimer: Which does not mean shirk the Everyday duties. Gotta pay the bills and gotta feed the people.) It is an Artist's job to try stuff. On a whim. Without reason. Without question. And it's best not to question it. Sort of like Zen enlightenment: the moment one tries to explain it, one has lost it.

Instagrammed as "nonsense."

Instagrammed as "more nonsense."

Instagrammed as "complete nonsense."
And why did I use that color?