Feeling the Blues

It doesn’t matter whether you are an artist, an athlete, or anyone who has a “big event,” what comes next is universal: the post-event blues. It’s the slump in the period following a big push where you feel drained, empty, and, sometimes, a little bit desperate. You’ve just put so much energy into this one thing, and then that thing is over and done, and you’re left wondering “What’s next?” “What more could I possibly do?” “How am I going to muster up the next thing?”

If you’ve ever felt that way or had those thoughts, I’m right there with ya. It’s a feeling that I’ve experienced before, but each time it takes me by surprise. My creative tank is hovering above low, and I’ve been wandering around my studio, keeping my hands busy, but doubting my ability to create anything at all.

Since creating and launching The Color of My Sky, I’ve been a bit stuck. It’s a combination of equal parts doubt, distraction, and whatever the opposite of creativity is. It feels as if I’ve forgotten how to paint and how to think creatively.

Over the past couple of years that I’ve experienced the creative rut, I’ve always been able to lift myself out of it and get back to doing what I do best. I’ve also learned over the years how to ride it out, and rise strong from the depths.

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Artists I'm Loving: No. 02

Today I'm featuring some of the art & artists that inspire me. These guys are too good not to share!

Lisa Golightly :: I've known about Lisa for a while now, and have never not loved anything she does. Her work is smushy and squishy when you look at it close up, but if you take a step back, you see figures and landscapes take shape. She is fearless with her negative space, and her compositional skills are some of the best. The color-lover in me appreciates those barely-there shifts in color and monochromatic paintings (like the one in the middle, below). Her work is loose and not too fussy, which reminds me to do the same when I work on my own paintings! 

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Ice Cream & Consistency

A while back I read an article in the Wall Street Journal that interviewed Jeni Britton Bauer, founder of Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams. I had just had some of her ice cream at her store in Nashville, so it seemed rather serendipitous that I was now reading an interview with her. What I loved most about what she had to say was how she approaches food with simplicity, and lets the flavors shine. She doesn't try to do anything crazy, she just amplifies what is already there. Her investment in simplicity is so attractive, and something I need to apply to my life and my art practice.

Another great article I keep coming back to is Maxie McCoy's guest post on Carly the Prepster on the topic of consistency as the key to growth. Even when I don’t want to, or I’d rather just stay in bed and lounge all morning, I MUST get up, go to my studio, and do the work. Otherwise nothing will get done. Even taking 30 minutes in between appointments or errands to stop in my studio and do something is better than nothing. Progress doesn’t happen overnight, and neither does success. Small steps culminate in a long journey - I can’t wish things into action, or rely on social media to do all of the work. I have to make work, because without it, there’s nothing to share or post about!

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Artists I'm Loving

Today I'm featuring some of the art & artists that inspire me. These guys are too good not to share!

Karen Blair :: I found Karen's work when we both had pieces at Bee Street Studio, and I was immediately grabbed by her lively brushstrokes and felt the energy coming from each piece. I loooove her use of soft colors, and admire how her pieces are abstract-ish, but still landscape-ish.

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For The Love of Color

There were many lessons I learned from a certain challenging assignment while I was in school. I learned to loosen up, to not put so much pressure on my work, and to experiment with color. My love of studying color stems from this project. What you might not know about my work is that I often paint the first layer of my paintings with garishly bright colors. I’m talking hot pinks, neon oranges, the most awful yellows, and cartoon blues. But then I layer softer colors on top of that. And then I keep layering. The result is a painting that appears soft, but has an inner glow from those first layers. It is through this process that I am able to feel what I am painting, and how people who see my work derive their emotional responses.

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