"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet."
Anyone else reminded of those long hours spent learning quotations for English Lit?
Open book exams - what an excellent idea!
This one's from Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet' and it's actually still pertinent for me today.
I've been thinking about identity. I've looked forward to being able to call myself 'an artist' and now I can, and I do.
I am an artist.
Turns out there are issues.....
We all have a whole host of ideas, images, pre-conceptions about what the 'artist' identity means. Some of these may describe me, others definitely don't. Of course, it's not my concern how other people may perceive me, but what's interesting is that I also have these stories - about myself! And that's a problem because then there's a pressure to live up to this identity - to look like a 'real' artist. When I don't measure up I can feel disappointed and inadequate which in turn lead to self-doubt and inaction.
So I asked myself two questions:
What does "artist" mean to me and what is "artist' for me
What does "artist" mean to me?
Artists are special, unique, different, valued, respected, envied.
Artists are more gifted, more expressive, more devoted, more consumed
Artists make art every day
Artists sell their work consistently.
So that's a lot to live up to!!
What is 'artist' for me?
It's the way I live my life.
I take notice of what I love - the things that stop me in my tracks.
I feel the wonder, the awe, the joy, the peace, the excitement,
and I respond to those feelings: I look, I laugh, I dance, I write and I paint
And here's the best part of all, that's exactly what everyone does!
We respond to what moves us and through those responses we create - we bring into being what didn't exist before, be that a vegetable patch or a get-together with friends or an oil painting the size of a house Claude...
So I can call myself an artist, or not - it doesn't matter, just as long as I don't get caught up believing my life should look a certain way because of the label.
You'll remember that earlier this year I travelled around Europe in a converted van painting, mountain biking and hiking.
The series of watercolour paintings from this trip are currently on show at Midgley Community Room and on Friday 22nd November I will be there talking about the trip and my art.
I'll be chatting about how my work is developing and why I continue to experiment with watercolour.
I'll also be reflecting on my adventures in the van, sharing my impressions of the places and people along the way.
I'd love you to come along and enjoy a friendly, informal evening and perhaps share your own experiences of art and/or travel.
£3.50 on the door, wine and cheese included
Originals and prints for sale
Midgley Community Room HX2 6UE
Friday 22nd November at 7pm
See you there!