Discover Magazine has an article in its September 2011 issue entitled, "Secret Life of the Mind." It reminds us of the vast knowledge we have that is not describable. An example is the story of James Clerk Maxwell's deathbed confession that "something within him" has made the discoveries of the fundamental equations unifying electricity and magnetism. Maxwell "actually had no idea how he'd achieved his great insights." This Discover Magazine article also mentions the ability of "chicken sexers" to distinguish male and female chicks from one another, which to normal eyes "look exactly the same." The Japanese invented a method of sexing chicks, which is taught by experts to students: "The master would stand over the apprentice and watch. The student would pick up a chick, examine the rear, and toss it into one bin or the other. The master would give feedback: yes or no. After weeks on end of this activity, the student's brain was trained to a masterful—albeit unconscious—level." This is the same with learning to make art. My thousands of drawings and paintings are me becoming a master through self-criticism: I ask myself over and over, "Does this make sense?" —yes or no? I do not answer verbally, or consciously, but simply move on to the next drawing, or painting, with the subconscious awareness of success or failure from previous activity.
In the past several days I have not spent a lot of time in the studio. I have been celebrating my successes. Yesterday's drawing was a quick one (less than an hour), and a successful one. It is time for me to return to a concerted effort. Once again, it is time for me to get my work out into the mainstream. Success within one's studio is isolation. I need to communicate to others. I am compelled to finish "Pulling Onions," then look to exhibit in New York City, Boston, and Chicago.
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