Sunday, May 17, 2015

The Exhibition

Rain Dancer, watercolour 2015 A3 (#4)

I had promised my friends at Ellis House that I would enter a painting in the next members' exhibition.  Unfortunately the entry date snuck up on me and, when I realized how soon I needed to have the painting in -- Easter weekend, which is already really busy at my house anyway -- I had a bit of a panic.  But I had promised, and figured why not try?

The theme of the exhibition was Water Rhythm (or similar).  Not really having a clue as to what that meant, I figured something watery would probably do it.  You can get away with a lot as a newbie.

So the same night I finished the previous painting, which was Good Friday, we went to the Good Friday evening service at church and then I came straight home and started looking for a subject to paint.  Painting one of my own kids wasn't a good idea because I already knew I couldn't put a price tag on one of those.  So I had a look online and found a sweet photo of a girl dancing in the rain with a creative commons license to use.

I asked some friends on facebook what they thought (love it!) and the general response to the photo was good, so I quickly drew it and started painting.

I knew what I wanted to do but I had no idea what order to do it in or what colours exactly to use.  Still had the wrong yellow ;)  I made sooooooooo many terrible mistakes and finally at around 2am I gave up.  I got out a huge mop brush and dunked it in the dirty paint water and swooshed it all over the painting.

Big grey-brown drips rolled down the painting, across the girl in the orange dress, onto my desk, everywhere.  I turned the painting the other way and did it again.  I didn't have any hope of salvaging this horrible painting.

Then I went to bed.

Next morning I got up and hubby said, "I really like your new painting!"  I snorted, thinking he was teasing me but when I looked at it, it was dried and it didn't look...all that bad.  I hadn't got a frame yet or anything so my time was really short for me to get something completed for that afternoon, and suddenly I thought I would just go with this painting.  See what happened.
I bought some mat board in a grey colour and a mat cutting set.  I got the frame at IKEA.  Somehow the mat and frame worked with the second mat I made to set off the poor painting and I couldn't say that it was all that horrible.

I put it in the exhibition.

It sold.

:) :) :)

And then after that, someone else wanted the same painting done again for them.  And several other people wanted other paintings done for them.  And just like that, I knew that I was actually an artist.

I can say more about that but to put it simply:  I believe an artist is someone who is able to translate ideas from one form (sometimes unable to be spoken) to another (possibly able to be seen or heard or felt).  Some people make pictures, and that's fine...but it's not the essence of art.  When someone connects emotionally with something you've drawn or made, that's art and you are an artist.  It doesn't really have anything to do with selling stuff -- but having people willingly part with money in order to own what they've connected with is a good indicator that you have made art.

1 comment:

  1. I love the story behind the painting. Don't ever doubt yourself. You are very specially gifted!