Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Creativity

I thought I'd write a little bit about creativity today since it has been on my mind a lot lately. Often times people will equate creativity with "production". But for me, a lot of things go on "below the surface" that I would equate with creativity, even if there is not a lot being produced as a result.

Right now I am involved in a lot of experimentation and exploration that doesn't necessarily result in a finished painting or drawing. It's possible that some of these "experiments" may find their way here on my blog if I feel particularly happy about them and want to share, but the real point is to always explore new ways to grow.

Sometimes I go through periods of high production followed by things taken at a much slower pace. I pay attention whenever I reach a certain comfort level with my work. Comfort can be a good thing--a really nice and in the flow feeling. But sometimes I feel so comfortable that it makes me downright uncomfortable, if that makes any sense! That is when I know it is time to regroup, branch out, take a break, experiment, or do a little bit of all of the above.

For example, today I have drawn out a new painting of Tuscany. I've also got an abstract painting underway. Who knows where that will lead me? And "on the side" I've been painting lamps and furniture, just for fun (and because I need some lamps and furniture!) Now I know that there are some art marketing gurus out there who may not like me doing so many different things. You should focus on one thing and do it well! I have heard that over and over again, and I can be, and have been a pretty good focuser. I do believe it is important for artists to develop their voice and a strong body of work. But I also know the value of experimentation, just for the sake of exploration.

So I'm playing with landscapes and different mediums. I'm playing with non-objective artwork. Temperatures have been in the high nineties here lately so not much playing en plein air, but when the weather breaks I'll probably play with that too. And I'm playing with furniture. Since the lamps are the only things I have pictures of right now, I'll post those here:

These were old seventies olive green lamps (the "old" olive, not the "new olive") that were tinted with bronze and had those brown speckles in them that you see in a lot of decor from this time period. I had a "before" picture of them somewhere, but I can't find it. I bought these at a yard sale ($5 for the pair) and painted them a metallic turquoise to match my turquoise pillows. I also applied a silver leaf to the base of the lamps and bought simple linen shades (since I figured there was enough going on with the lamps!) They may be a little too "Liberace" for some folks but I LOVE my lamps! Here is a close up:

The landscape shown in this photo is one I did of a Key West scene. I really need a larger painting to go here, but the colors were right so it will do for now (until it sells or I make a new painting ;-))

Jennifer Young; Vibrant Landscapes
www.jenniferyoung.com
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Tags: art painting landscape painting artist plein air

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