Truth in Art

I was reading about Bob Dylan yesterday, in a summary of his music career written by Scott Marshall, in a little book titled Spiritual Journeys –How faith has influenced twelve music icons. I realised it was his birthday. Bob Dylan turned  70 years old on the 24th May. What has always been influential for me, besides Dylan’s amazing song writing and music, is his conviction to what he sees as his truth. He has never shied away from his own beliefs which are boldly written in his songs.

Music has always been high on my list of things that inspire and watching Buffy Sainte- Maree, another 70 year old performer on stage at the Byron Blues Fest, had a huge impact. There were quite a few musicians over 60 yrs of age. These performers had strong convictions and a lifetime’s work to draw on.

Creative people who have strong traits such as a love of freedom, mystery, empathy  and beauty, be it subtle or shouted about, and who combine these with endurance, courage, ingenuity and self trust are always  genuine in their pursuit for the real thing. Not satisfied with the mundane they do what it takes to achieve their goals honestly.

Getting to the truths of any art form has never been easy, and Bob Dylan has many critics, yet he remains an icon. Age should not be a deterrent, nor criticism, nor lack of support. These can become poor excuses for not creating what is in the heart. Fear can stop the greatest idea as can our concerns for what others might say.  Being aware of this is the first step, from then on it can only be upwards.

The painting below is of  a view from my older art studio. It was not a conscious image that I painted  as the tree appeared unexpectantly. I realised it was the tree that had grown from a  sapling by the nearby dam during the drought. It was a real survivor.  This painting is currently on show at Moreton Art Awards at Pine Rivers Art Gallery and Community Centre until the 29th May

View from the art studio - abstract modern art painting

View from the Studio Door 122 x 122 cm 2010

Creative Insights

My purpose for this blog is to inspire others in their creative journey. From my own research into the creative process came two books on finding the purpose for creating art. In my next series of blog posts I will include paragraphs from these books which I hope you will find interesting and educational. The first post is from Page 10, which is the Overview

Having always been fascinated by the way things came together in the act of creating, I longed to find methods to step back into the flow without the struggle. The insights I gained are now part of my first book Gleaner or Gladiator : The Struggle to Create book. In gathering together the resources to document my findings I was made acutely aware that the creative journey is a process made up of many milestones.

Just as a child does not revisit the steps taken when learning to walk, so we all move on to new ways of thinking. Some of the issues that once seemed so important are no longer seen as hurdles. There was a time when I thought that, although there were many joyous moments and I loved what I was doing, struggles would always abound and the creative path by its very nature was bumpy and difficult to navigate. What was to change my thinking and consequently my creative output was the realisation that I needed an altruistic focus, far above the mundane that had been my mainstay.

The image here is from Page 9  of the book – Glasshouse 8, a diptych which reflects a childhood growing up on an island off the Queensland coast. You are welcome to post comments. Short Pdf’s of this book are available.

Inspiration from childhood memories

How art fills up the senses

On getting into flow in the art studio – Having just stretched 20 odd canvases for my next series of paintings I am sitting down at my computer with the remnants of white gesso clinging to my hands. I had forgotten what a dichotomy this job of preparing canvases can be. It swings between exasperation with the time taken up to do the work and the sense of anticipation and excitement as I paint the final coat of white gesso on each untouched stretched canvas.

The series I plan to paint has been in my head for about four weeks now although I don’t doubt it has been coming for years. A trip to North Stradbroke Island cemented the idea and even gave the work a name. Can I pull this series  off? This is every artist’s dilemma however preparing the surface to paint is a great start.

A book I read years ago comes to mind. It was written by Dr Eric Maisel and titled Fearless Creating. Dr Maisel discusses how artists, like Picasso did, get  into flow through preparation rituals in the studio. Picasso liked to sharpen his pencils in readiness for drawing.

Today I felt the readiness forming a promise around me and a sense that I am not going to push through the difficulties I have had to find again the real purpose for my painting. The expectation is delicious and like looking at a great dessert and knowing how good it is going to taste. Getting into this state is about finding the enjoyment in mundane tasks so that when the exciting part arrives, actually applying artist paints, you are already in flow.

Every now and then there is a need to remember gratitude and today I am sharing how fortunate those of us that love to create are and how barren our world would be without art to fill the senses. Below is a work titled Secrets of my Garden which was painted about six weeks ago. Happy creating to you  all.

Lyne Marshall acrylic on canvas painting - Secrets of my Garden

Secrets of my Garden 90 x70cm acrylic on stretched canvas