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Tuesday Art Night: Thoughts about art

July 23, 2008
Red Fish, made for Brother Matt, December 2007


It’s my newly-designated Tuesday Art Night. The evening’s plans have twisted and turned (as plans will do)… took Terri to a Lyme group in Berkeley but she started to feel very unwell so we came home early. Then I had to do something about my upset tummy so made some rice. Then I considered sitting down at the art desk to fiddle around, but thought I would read my new book Kaleidoscope just to put some ideas in my head.

I’m reading this book and looking at all these fantastic, messy, unfinished, imperfect, crazy collages, mixed-media pieces and random arty projects… and I think to myself, what should I make? And I can’t see myself making any of them at all. So then I think, well, maybe that’s because they’re somebody else’s projects. What would I make on my own? And all I can see is a blank piece of paper.

Hello, Creative Block. (hey, that just sparked an idea…) Mr. Kibosh. I see a project where someone has done a collage involving pictures of birds. I love birds. I had a brief moment of, “Oh! I’ll paint some birds!” and then I immediately came up with 100 reasons why that wasn’t a good idea. WTF? Come On. It’s Tuesday Art Night: anything goes. That is going to be my new motto. Anything goes for Tuesday Art Night.

I get all hung up on something not being Right. And then What Will I DO With It. And then Who Is It For. And then, that old standby: Not Good Enough.

What baloney I tell myself. Seriously. I’m almost 34 years old, which is plenty old enough to make whatever that hell I want without it having to be a present for someone, or to serve a purpose to justify it’s existence, and I certainly am old enough to throw out all those old standards of Good or Not Good. It doesn’t matter if my dad would think it was good, or even if anyone thinks it’s good. I just need to work with my hands, make stuff, fuck stuff up, throw things out, love things to bits, be proud, be frustrated… but be MAKING. It’s time. I have the room. I have the time. It’s time.

Therefore: since tonight’s Art Night got somewhat derailed by various happenings, tomorrow I will take two hours for some Art Time and I will paint a little 4×4 canvas with birds. There will be birds involved somehow. It may involve some other bits as well, but definitely birds. And if I don’t like it, that’s fine. I will paint over it sometime. The point is to get me in the art room, Making. Because making is good, whatever the outcome.

PS: Note to self… also, stop taking self so seriously.

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