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Reflecting On Three Years

January 12, 2013

A Sketch



The year-end summary of my blog has got me thinking about where I was a year ago and how much you can change in a short period of time. It’s like the ability to share my work was the missing link and now that I have discovered it my creativity has been set free and I feel inspired to follow my dreams and explore unknown possibilities.

I have also  learned what I believe to be my most important lesson ever about human expression through art which is once you remove the trappings of financial value, commodification, exhibitability, genre etc you are free to produce work not to please, shock or impress but work to satisfy your own curiosity, truth and desire. I find it hard to articulate but without these constraints you are a step nearer to your own truth and freedom. This may sound simplistic but I had to  dig deep to rid myself of the years of baggage that burdened me. I have  made a living from my work since 1985 which involved making products that people would like and buy, this put a pressure on me and in the end my work was judged by gallery owners before it could be exhibited,  I always worked with sincerity but the pressures were shaping me and my outlook. Fortunately for me I was able to spend about eight years in virtual solitary confinement as a young recluse where I developed my fiercely individualistic approach then in my thirties my work was exposed through the galleries where I learned to produce my work in quantity but with this my creative energies became diluted and my spark dwindled. These things happen over a long period of time, so it is a slow change that you don’t notice there are also other complications in life too that serve to distract but it was a growing feeling of dissatisfaction that  proved to be my catalyst. For years I found it hard to motivate myself, I had grown tired and disinterested in art and life my soul had been destroyed by the constant pressures to conform in normal society, I have always been a bit of a crazy loose cannon but even that was being taken away from me. At one stage I got into the habit of finishing each day with a drop or two of red wine, just enough to put me to sleep and end the day without reflection but then one day it all changed. I was having a coffee with a good friend and we were talking about life and drinking and for some reason the penny dropped and I decided to stop drinking and wasting my evenings and get back on with the mission. (As I often mention the deaths of my sisters and mother were also key to the decline of my creativity) I guess I felt sorry for myself but you have to face up to what life throws at you and get on with it and that is exactly what I do now, I’m a bit angrier than I was at twenty but you learn when you’re down you get kicked and I don’t take that sort of shit any more.  Now when I say I’m angrier I still walk around with that smile on my face it’s just when people rattle my cage I ROAR. I had always been a joker and it’s only just recently that I have discovered how seriously you have to  take life, you have to make things happen with determination. I recently had a photo taken for my passport and compared it to the one from ten years ago and two things stood out one I’m much leaner and two my eyes are physically much more open.

So in the past year I have unravelled myself and returned to the core of my being, rediscovering my passionate belief in art as a true expression, I have no regrets (well not many) and take great comfort in what I have learnt from my life’s experience after all that is the sum of my parts, I am but a curious mixture of contradictions. So moving on I feel more determined than ever to prove my artistic worth through my endeavour I know I’m on the cusp of some interesting new ideas and will carry on with belief and conviction.

It is only recently after all my experimental and sometimes provocative pieces that I am experiencing this feeling of freedom and who knows how far you have to go to realise your potential (yes it is scary Mrs 🙂 ) but the ride is most enjoyable.


A Idea


PS – My other big lesson is that art is not about other art its about life   🙂 xxx

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