Thursday, January 03, 2008

Art Goals for 2008


One of the advantages of being on this earth for half a century is that you have a good idea of what works and what doesn't. And I know that setting New Year's resolutions for myself does not work. While it sounds good in theory - Fresh year, Fresh start and all that - in reality this is the time of year for hunkering down and looking for comfort and warmth and ease to make it through the short, sunless days and long, cold nights. I find that the best time to start something new with determination and enthusiasm is in the spring, when all the world around me is also being renewed and starting over. So no resolutions for me - I know myself well enough to be sure that I will fail in executing them, and then feel bad about myself and my lack of will power. Instead I will set some goals that I will work towards over the next twelve months. Just a few gentle suggestions for improving my drawing and painting:

1. Have fun, relax, experiment, explore and enjoy.
2. Take a class. Learn proper technique. I have signed up for Kate's watercolor pencil class in February. (I have a set of watercolor pencils, and confess that I have absolutely no idea what to do with a white pencil. I would much rather have had Indigo and Burnt Sienna than black and white).
3. Continue to do the EDM challenges weekly, and try to do one of the ones that I have not yet done.
4. Begin including people and urban landscapes in my repertoire. Practice, practice, practice!
5. Use lots of color because lots of color makes me happy (see goal #1)

I think I'll stop here. These are small, manageable goals that I feel I can handle. Any thing more complex or taxing will probably make it difficult to achieve goal number 1, and I honestly believe that without that goal, none of the rest are even worth doing. Art is not my job, it is not something that I do for anyone else, it is something I do to balance my soul, and bring joy and reflection to my everyday life. It is when I pay homage to the delights of the ordinary, everyday things that surround me and bring such beauty into our lives. I want the time I spend drawing and painting to be contemplative and meditative and restoring. "An enchanted hour was filched from the hereafter and tossed into the lap of the present, as a foretaste of what is to become...
A mystic world into which we step as soon as we cross the threshold of the porch" Ethelind Fearon (1946)

7 comments:

Lisalou said...

Ohhh please...let me be the first to say that your thoughts on why you do this are nothing less than enchanting. I wish I had said it!
I am new...looking for role models and have found a kindred spirit in your wise words. Lisa

caseytoussaint said...

These goals seem achievable but if you follow through, you will learn so much. I'm looking forward to being in the watercolor pencil class with you, and to watching your art develop in 2008.

Nina Johansson said...

A well thought through set of goals, I think you´ll manage to stick to them and learn a lot on the way. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Loved reading your goals and found that I really related to the following:

"Art is not my job, it is not something that I do for anyone else, it is something I do to balance my soul, and bring joy and reflection to my everyday life." With your permission I may need to put this in the front of each new sketchbook!
Shirley
http://www.paperandthreads.com

Penny said...

I also like your goals, I m afraid I dont have any except to fit more in and not sit and procratinate. My year looks pretty exciting so I am going to go with the flow for a while.
thanks for your comment on my blog, sometimes i am serious and sometimes not. At my time of life i dont mind.

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

You wrote: 'pay homage to the delights of the ordinary, everyday things that surround me and bring such beauty into our lives' -and that's about right. Our drawings are social history I guess about small details we notice around us. I like your goals - they are not about changing the whole world - and they are achievable.
w.

africantapestry said...

I also believe in small manageable goals...you can always expand them during the course of the year. Great ones you have...good luck, I'll follow you on this trail.
ronell