Wednesday, January 25, 2017


Quotes are always good for the journal. One of my all time favorites is by artist Chuck Close, and it has become sort of my motto. "Inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us just show up and get to work."

Too many people think that visual art, or music, or literature, or any art form comes into being as a piece of divine inspiration. As if the heavens opened up and from out of the ether, the idea was formed. Unfortunately, throughout the centuries, artists, musicians, writers, and such have done little to dispel this notion.

It is simple, art is work, but it's easy to work when things are going well. When your in the mood, its easy to pick up the brush, the pen, the guitar. But if you only worked when you were inspired or when conditions were right, you wouldn't work much, and your art would not be very good. So, when you don't feel like working, you work. When you're tired and sick, you work. When there are a million things to do, you work. That is how you become an artist.


Unknown said...
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Unknown said...

This quote has been rolling around in my head since it was posted. There are multifaceted implications in interpretation. One can sit and do nothing; passively waiting for inspiration. For me, more often than not, inspiration makes me acutely aware of what I lack in skill. Over the last few weeks I have been mindful of my thought processes and at what point inspiration becomes demotivating. It has led to an incredible shift in my perspective on art. When considering something, I am now discovering what is tickling my brain about a specific piece. Instead of merely knowing I like something or trying to figure out what the artist was thinking, I am drawn to the movement, layers, brush strokes, colors, etc. It is more of an appreciation than admiration an is helping me to incorporate the elements that captivate me into my own project (even at the gym, while dancing, cleaning, etc.) everything is becoming a medium for artistic expression...even drawing in the Windex as it drips before I wash the window...little fleeting works that will probably forever be forgotten, but help me grow and develop. For me, the getting to work part is the intentional, mindful, seeking of inspiration at any given moment; looking at what is happening right in front of me and capturing the smallest thing and giving it attention and nurturing its growth even IF the end result is not what I expected, desired, or intended. It is intentional development of habit that becomes alive and free in my spontaneity. All of it leads to improving skills and abilities, just like exercise leads to strength and cardiovascular benefits.

Eric said...