I have found that goals realized are a powerful incentive to set new ones. Achieving goals, and reviewing them, is a great way of inspiring confidence to keep on track with my work. Once a project is accomplished, it seems to instantly turn from “unobtainable” into something like “Oh - THAT was easy!” Have you ever noticed that phenomenon? In reviewing goals I have achieved so far, particularly ones that once seemed so overwhelming - such as mounting solo exhibits, creating a dedicated studio space, and retiring early in order to spend more time on my artwork - I find that I am even more motivated to focus on a larger goal: reaching out to new communities.
In attempting to capture the spirit of a place, I create a series of images using representations of architecture, streetscapes, light, and color. The newness of a place is exciting to me and I like to create mementos of its “specialness” to be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. It excites me to see people’s reactions when they see my work of a place they are familiar with – when they can see it from a different perspective, or when they notice a beautiful detail that may have previously escaped their attention.
For example, in October I was on the Mediterranean coast in Southern France, in a town called Port Vendres. As I explored this new area, I was struck by the beauty of this church. I loved the way it faced the harbour, and the multitude of ways that parishioners could arrive for services - they could walk, drive a car or moto, ride their bicycle, or bring their boat right up to the front door of the church. I had never seen such a thing! In seeking to capture the sense of this church and this place, these habits and these people, I created this piece:
THIS is what I want to do more of. I have tried to break this large goal down into smaller ones, and I review them on a weekly basis (at the coffee shop, of course!), using the list as a source of inspiration and reflection. So I continue to sketch, to seek out opportunities to travel to new places (whether they be overseas or down the road), to contact new venues, and to research organizations to collaborate with. I am networking, learning new media, creating more product options, and entering more group shows and artists’ competitions. Word of mouth and personal contacts remain my most valuable source of new work, so I am working on ensuring that my goals, abilities, and potential are clear to clients and friends, new and old.
I look forward to new explorations!