Sunday, September 12, 2010

I have to learn all of THIS?

Originally uploaded by katzeye

It’s been a while since I went back to school.

I started college in the fall of 1967. Yes, this was before computers (well, at least the personal kind, before cell phones, before ipods, before mp3s and digital cameras.

I had two majors: Art and Psychology. There were some who, when they heard that I was an art student, chided me by saying that I must just be there to get my “MRS.” Luckily, I was able to throw out my other major at times like that. Yes, two majors, one is considered to be the more academic of the two. But which?

To most, it was the Psych major. Perhaps that was technically true. But the reality is that my art studio classes took a lot out of me. They were two hours long, every time. Many a day I was in art studio classes for 4-6 hours at a stretch. Art professors are very exacting. If your work is not up to their expectations, you suffer the wrath of the critique. Those classes were grueling. And it wasn’t just studio, it was lots and lots of art history classes, too. And theory, and all kinds of painting, every kind, and sculpting, and, well, I would come out of those studios with paint on my clothes, and under my nails, and stumble into a psych class, actually feel relieved to be in a class where I could take in information, ponder and formulate it, and reproduce it. It was so simple. It was a relief to have academic stuff, so cut and dried.

Since graduating from college, I have continued college on and off in many ways and forms. I’ve been in grad school a few times. I’ve taken classes here and there. I’ve continued studies in psychology, humanities, literature, etc. I love to learn.

And so, I decided that I had reached a point, artistically, where I might be stagnating. Since I was an art student, last, we hand painted, hand lettered, hand-everything, laboriously, tediously, critically. In a sense, I have jumped back in to my starting point, as an art student. Only look how much it has changed!

And look at how much technical experience I need to put in and learn. The learning curve is astounding.

But I have to say, that with all of the many changes, there are things that have not changed.

The desire to be artistic, to be creative, has never faded. Immersion in art sharpens one’s eye, so that all that is seen is seen with all of the glories of color, light, composition.

For my clients (those who hire me to do photography for them, draw and paint for them, etc.), be prepared for a fresh infusion of new light in my work.

I just looked out the window and was amazed at the colors and the way the late afternoon light is warming up the contours of all that I am seeing.

It totally reminds me of when I was 18, and would step out of an interpretive drawing class, or an oils class, and would nearly be overwhelmed by the colors, patterns and light outside, on campus.

And I remember what my parents said, “Do what you love.”

And I will, as soon as I figure out how to do all this stuff! Again.