Thursday, October 20, 2011

Inspiration is a wild thing...

 I had a strange and funny thing happen today, and it got me thinking how, as an artist, inspiration can be a lot like hunting in the forest.
   You know you are surrounded by teeming life, but it takes experience and practice to actually spot it. You can hear it rustling in the shrubs, but until you can open your eyes, it remains elusive and free.
 Today I decided I was going to finally finish some of the paintings I began a while ago, but after spending most of the morning in my studio, I was still stumped to finish this painting. The background and the subject were done, but I didn't know which way I wanted to go with the theme/message. At one point, late in the morning, I was interrupted by a couple of ladies from Jehovah's Witness knocking at my door. I didn't welcome the distraction, but I answered the door, not stopping to clean up before hand.
 
   Now  I should add here that I am a very messy artist, I cannot seem to keep from getting half covered in paint and glue when I work. I also have a habit of sticking pencils, pens and paint brushes into my ponytail when I really get going on something. I have wandered around the house for hours wondering where my favorite brush was, only to find it tucked securely at the back of my head. Yeah, I know, weird...but it's how I roll.
 
   So, back to answering the door. I greeted the missionaries, and listened politely to their message, not having the heart to tell them I am pretty comfortable with my beliefs, but thank you just the same. I did notice though, they both kept looking at me, in a strange, uncertain way. Quick furtive glances, at my face, and up behind me. It was an awkward exchange and ended quickly.
 
   I decided, after they left, to take a quick break and get something to eat. So I went into the bathroom to get washed up, and saw in the mirror what had so discomforted my visitors. Not only did I spot both a pencil and a paint brush peeking rakishly out from behind my head, just like feathers in a headdress, but somehow I had managed to smear my paint covered hands across my cheeks! I looked as though I had put on war paint and battle-dress for a raid!
  
    After cleaning myself up, and having a good laugh, I started to make connections. The words "Brave New Girl" kept coming to me. The subject of being brave enough to share as an artist is always at the forefront of my mind, thanks to my wonderful community of beautiful artists I play with online. So the connections were Indian brave, being brave and a whole new me. No longer a full time Mom and now seeking my place as an artist. This gave me the vision to add the finishing touches to my little painting and one more goal was achieved!
 
   Inspiration is a funny thing, elusive, stubborn, persistent and demanding. Hard to track, and harder to capture, but if left alone, it may just come gently to your hand...

4 comments:

  1. LOVE it, Sally! Great story, and wonderful painting!

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  2. I love the Art, I love the story, mostly I love that you made the missionaries uncomfortable. Funny how they didnt even say anything, or even acknowledge that you had obviously been painting. Had to stay on their script i guess :/. You rock!!

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