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I have painted all my life. And like yoga, painting fits into the part of me where I can escape to another world. There is no time or space, just colors and shapes dancing together in unlimited possibilities. Bright colors, dark colors and the many shades in between create a mood, a stark contrast and interplay of emotions.
I think that every time we look at something beautiful, like a sunrise or fireworks, we connect with the eternal, the joyful godlike self. And we want to preserve the moment. We take a picture in our minds, and hope we can hold on to both the image itself and the way that it made us feel inside. Artists take a different route by expressing the beautiful moment through painting, drawing, sculpting and other mediums in order to preserve the image. But because every individual perceives life’s experiences in different ways, there are a myriad of possibilities of what will come out on the canvas. Our artistic expression is also shaped by the medium that we use, the camera settings, or the words that we choose to describe the moment. Possibly, it’s never exactly what we saw, and chasing after the ideal can become maddening. I think that nature is always the ultimate master, but by continuing to practice our art we can bring ourselves closer to the divinity of life’s precious moments.
Sometimes I feel like I am the character in the movie of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Richard Dreyfus plays the main character
possessed with visions of a mountain that he is suppose to climb, to meet with aliens. There is a scene where he is in the kitchen madly trying to reproduce with piles of dirt, wire, trash cans, bricks and what ever he could find and drag in from the outside to help him somehow clarify and put his hands on what his mind was telling him to do. That moment when he finally feels like he is done with a giant mountain sitting in a middle of his kitchen and just glances at the TV, he sees the same copy of it on the news. It justifies the whole mess. That is the feeling I get when I know the painting is done. Up until that point it was just a frenzy of emotion, or if you let your self calm down, an afternoon play. And that is mixed medial play. I don’t copy something that is right in front of me. I use the images in my mind to create something in front of me, using scraps of paper, glue, tidbits of memos, crayons, stencils, stamps, and hoping that eventually all this will create something I want to look at.