Every now and then, a book will really launch some great thought and move me forward. I just began reading “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert upon the recommendation of a friend and already it is a new favorite. Here is a quote by one of Elizabeth’s favorite writers from the first couple of chapters:
“Do you have the courage? Do you have the courage to bring forth this work? The treasures that are hidden inside you are hoping you will say yes.” – Jack Gilbert
Sometimes painting seems like quite an audacious pursuit. I mean, throughout the centuries there have been wonderful artists all seeking some new way to express what they see or feel. What makes me think I should participate? Are there still scenes that need to be painted? In the era of digital art and constant images, why paint? And yet, why not? There is no limit to the ways in which light catches the side of a building or the colors change through the seasons. There is no end to the lessons that can be learned over time. Why shouldn’t more of us participate in something wonderfully creative just for the doing – the sheer joy of playing and making something.
Right now, I am getting ready for a sizable solo exhibit which is scheduled to begin January 20. I have been putting together a collection of approximately 20 cohesive recent pieces – not easy! These bits of color on canvas are so important to me – they have been part of my days for months now. It takes a bit of courage to put them out there for friends and coworkers and others to view and comment on. And yet…..as Elizabeth Gilbert says so well….”bravery means doing something scary.” And so, this weekend I will be joyfully spending time with summer marshes and scenes of Provincetown and other favorite places. I’ll paint a bit, frame a bit, sit and wonder, and breathe.