State 20 of the painting 2017 No.13 was important. There will be a state 21. Right now this painting is a pinch away from finality. The only thing I question is the mid-portion of the dominant right form. I am wondering if the value of the shadow between the lowest snake-like form and its second-from-bottom portion is too high; should it be darkened? That, along with a few minor purifications, it will be done; will happen today.
Yesterday's drawings are vastly different from one to the next. This happens when I am anticipating transition to a new painting. What shall I do? With what shall I wrestle? A new painting will begin very soon.
It is mid-afternoon. I have not gotten to the studio. A pressure, manufacture by a problem inherent to modern living, took me over. I got it done. All is OK. I had to do something to make the solution last for years to come. This distraction could not be avoided. If living here and now is to be simple, rather than complexed by worry, it had to be done. Actually, this is similar to my making art. It has to be done! Yesterday's work was very good. Do not pay attention to my concerns, pay attention to the quality of my work. Thanks!
Doing this, making art, every day, is leading to loss of concern. I am giving up my tendency to overthink. It is being replaced with simplicity of action. Self-discovery is not simple. It is an iterative process which insists the intuition function without worry.
No matter how much I wonder if it is complete, refinement is always possible. The intellectual question is... "Does a little more refinement make the painting better?" In this case, I believe, "Yes!" Yesterday I thought I would move on to a new painting. Then I looked at "2016 No.13"; a little part of it annoyed me. I changed it. I think it better. But, for several minutes, before making the change, I sat there, in front of it, looking, wondering, "Will such a small alteration make it better?" I am glad I did what I did. I will not point the changes out to you, since I think my questions should be the same as yours. Then you may answer for yourself.
Yesterday's drawing took an interesting direction. I continue to wonder about the biomorphism of my work. In its extreme, it bothers me. I do not want the viewer to be so involved in references to nature that he/she misses my primary concern. First, foremost, I want the viewer to be wowed by the emotive qualities of the primary artistic elements: composition, color, form, space. Does yesterday's drawing do this? Or, do you, the viewer, first see a weirdly derivative animal on a pedestal? I'd like to know.
In yesterday's blog post I wondered, out-loud, about my needing to write about my art. In my conceit, I actually believed it might be speaking, lucidly, for itself. That feeling went away quickly. Mostly I just worry. Anxiety never allows me to go very far into calmness. So I am back writing about my worries. Oh well! I am better for it. I hope you feel the same. I worry! It drives me to the next idea.
When does an image get so complex it is emotionally unreadable? That is today's worry. Yesterday produced a complex drawing and the beginning of a complex painting. I take solace in Willem de Kooning's best paintings. They are complex, readable, emotive, and intellectually satisfying. Perhaps that is the goal in my work. I say, "perhaps..." because it is unravelling as I write. As example, it is difficult to show you a representative painting from de Kooning's mature years of production. Most of de Kooning's work is copyright restricted. Below you will see a reproduction of a de Kooning mid-career painting from 1955.
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