What is more relevant in terms of ones art. Is is the art itself, or is it the purpose and meaning behind the work of art. Perhaps the answer to this lies in what makes a work of art interesting to look at. When a work of art is devoid of purpose or intent, it tends to "look" and "be" nothing more than a technical feat of good drawing ability. Great art needs to be MORE than that! When any of the Great Masters created art, they put their entire self, their entire soul into their work. They were great artists and that was the purpose of their work. To create a great work of art. Work in which their very soul seems to eminate from. The "Divine" spiritual "meaning" behind some of these works also was very important. Perhaps some artists need to look within "themselves" to discover this type of spiritual purpose and meaning and incorporate it into their art.
Do we plan our art or do we plan our lives. The decision to create art one day and not the next is often dictated by our lives and unfortunately not the creative process itself. The creative process can be curtailed, but it's need, it's desire to be expressed often leads the artist to suffer much anxiety until that process can be fulfilled. Such is the life of the artist!
Many moments in our lives affect the way we live. The way we think. It's amazing the way these things can control us. Consume us. Make us do and say the things we do. When it comes to making art can we allow these things to control us. To take over our minds in a way that make us want to express these moments or feelings. An artist is allowed the privilege of having an outlet for these emotions. A way to separate the pain and pleasure and release them onto a canvas.
We have all heard the term "starving artist", but what "life experiences" mold the personality and mental ability to create a work of art. Many artists have both good and bad life experiences, with some a more tragic life than others. It always seems to me that artist's with a harder life which includes great suffering can often times yield better work. I use the term "better", in that there seems to be more "feeling" and "emotion" in the work of these particular artists. I don't mean "better" in terms of "technical drawing ability". Alot of artists already have that. But rather a sense of tragedy and emotion that one feels when viewing their work. However, that is not to say that "suffering" is the only source for yielding emotion in one's work. Some artists live a very vibrant life with a strong personality that can come across in their work as well. As a whole, I think an artist's work is very much shaped by their life and how they live it.
How does one "prepare" to be creative. Is it the surroundings we put ourselves in. Is it a "state of mind" one has to be in. What triggers that creative "spark" that allows an artist to create his greatest works. I am sure it is different for different artists. Some are very "anylitical" in both their approach and attitude towards their work. Others are very "free" in their approach without much forethought. Still others have something within them that drives them. A creative "genious" very rarely needs to "learn" how to "create" something. It is an ability they are born with. For a truely creative person to "create" something, I believe the ability and knowledge is already largely there within them. Their need to "create" is akin to someone needing to eat. It just simply....is. However, I believe that in a creative state there needs to be very little "distraction". One needs to isolate himself from all that he considers to be "distracting". Something like listening to music is not necessarily a distraction if it helps in concentration. This "distraction" is what I feel hinders the creative process the most. After that, there also must be a physical and psycholgical state one has to be in to create art. Different artist are driven by different physical and psychological needs to do this. For me it is often times being "one with God". A certain "spiritual" state of mind. I can't say exactly what it is for different artists. Everyone has their own needs to be fulfilled. But I do feel that the greatest works of art come as a gift from God.
How do we view artists. Do we view them by their work or by themselves alone. Perhaps we judge them from their work because it is an extension of themselves, but is it always? At times an artist expresses "himself". A sort of alter ego as in a self-portrait or something the artist "attaches" himself to, as in a painting about his religion. But then again, an artist can also paint pictures which express the ugliness he feels for something. The exact opposite of his "likes". The exact opposite of "him". In this sense, the "interpretation" of his work becomes more complicated because it is not a mere reflection of the artist as "himself". Even an artist's "interpretation" of "beauty" can be subjective and not "relate" to the artist at all, but rather an "ideal" that the artist is trying to "grasp" or "possess" by painting or creating it. Something that is an "ideal" in their mind, but not necessarily someone else's. Artwork by artists expresses how they "see" the world around them. It "relates" to them, but we must also see an artist as a "distinct" and "unique" individual in themselves and not just by what they create!
What does it take to be an artist. Does it take talent. Does it take skill. Does it take imagination. Perhaps all of the above, but is there something. Something that sets you apart from others. That part of yourself that others can't "see", but perhaps "feel" about you that's different.....that's unique. Something that only "you" can express in your work. An expression of one's inner self. That is what I think makes a GREAT artist.
Sometimes it's not "what" we paint, but what we are painting for. Do we paint for ourselves or for others. Are we painting for a reason, or is it a reason defined by others. As artists we must define ourselves or get lost in what others think, or think we should be, or even worse, how or what we should paint!
Thunder today. Rain today. Alone...today. Thinking of painting....today. Will I make art with the roar of thunder in my ears or drown it out with my CD player. Perhaps both. Images and feelings of Christ's blood. The thorns. The crown of thorns. Palms....blood. This is the torment I must express in my painting.
Where does the "feeling" of a work of art come from? Does the artist take it to a "dark" place or the opposite? Is the feeling negative or positive? Each artist finds it in himself where to go with a painting and how the work of art will "feel" to the viewer. For me personally as an artist, I often, ( but not always), like to dwell on a somber situation that also creates a sense of "elation" and "spiritual strength". For example in my painting "Stigmata", we have a somber image of a girl's hands inflicted with severe wounds, but the "elation" of her "spiritual strength" shows through in the expression on her face. It is this "personality" in an artist's work that relates the "feeling" and message the artist is trying to express.
Author: Karen Kroplinski, Artist
I am the author of this blog and I am here to write my day to day thoughts and inspirations concerning my art. I will try to give you an update on what I am doing and what I am thinking regarding the creation of my artwork......and perhaps a few tidbits on other things happening in my life.