"Automatic marks are deadly to a painting or a drawing." Bill Park, 2013
These words continue to bounce around in my mind, days after the workshop. They stick with me because they apply so directly and uncomfortably to my work. Both with painting and with drawing, there are times when I stop observing and let my know-it-all rational brain take control. Instead of looking with fresh eyes, concentrating as if I'm completely unfamiliar with the subject, I start thinking things like, "the hip juts out here like this, the calf curves out like so" and my marks look different. Unconsidered. Boring. Deadly.
To hold the focus of mindfulness takes a lot of concentration and determination. And self-awareness.
From start to its current state, this painting has been an exercise in doing differently. I began with an intention to create texture within a blue/green/gold color field. My first orange figure marks started with a monoprint from another painting. I followed what interested me, and kept things moving with energy and excitement. No automatic marks.
One of the most exciting benefits of taking a good workshop is coming away with new ideas. The challenge is to not slip back to old habits and automatic ways of doing things.
Doing differently. I like it!
Melody Gardot does it with "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." That's what I'm talking about. I have never seen a cello played like a guitar before this!