I think there is a major fallacy in the art world which insists that an artist must find his or her “voice” or style and then once they do, must regurgitate that voice over and over again, even when it ceases to inspire them.
I have always been of the opposite mindset. From the beginning of my art career, I have been driven to create whatever inspires me in the moment, not considering how it would be labelled. I have found this to be much more exciting and has led to, what I believe to be, more growth as an artist. I have personally switched between figurative, abstract, landscape, still-life, canvas, wood, glass, masonite, oil, ink and variations in between. I have found that this has kept me focused, passionate and on my toes.
I do admit that an artist must find their voice or style, but that this might end up being voices or styles, plural. Maybe this should be the standard, or at very least more widely accepted. Most people in the business of art are convinced that this will not sell or be marketable, and that it will hinder the recognition factor for the potential buyer/collector. To that I say, let’s try to expand our minds a little bit people. Through trying my hand at all of these different genres, I still hear from people all of the time, that while searching the web and social media, that they can always tell my work immediately. So I guess a unifying style or voice can indeed bridge the gap of genre.
Having said all of this, I recently finished up a piece called “Convergence”. I was very proud of this piece, but once done and marketed, I found myself feeling a tad bit flat and uninspired. This happens from time to time in the artist’s world and I believe must be embraced and not feared. I don’t however let it dictate my life or work, as I am always excited and anxious to get back to painting. Therefore, I use this time to contemplate and meditate for a few days until the next idea hits me. Many times the idea comes in my sleep, or upon waking. Sometimes during or after a meditation. But this time it hit me while driving in my car and I am more than happy to introduce it and my new series:
When I got this idea, I became so excited that I wanted to turn the car around and get started right away. These Micro Paintings would not just be tiny/small works, but affordable, functional and highly unique paintings. I had the idea to start by finding unique and antique photo picture frames of all kinds. Instead of starting with a blank canvas or surface and creating something out of nothing, I would find these unique individual frames and let the painting idea develop to fit their own unique style! Essentially, I would work in reverse. These paintings would be affordable and multi-functional in that many of them could be hung on the wall and/or placed standing upright on a desk, counter or any flat surface in the house or office. As the idea grew on me by the second, I found myself suddenly refreshed and invigorated.
The next day I set out to antique stores, thrift shops, and found sellers of unique small frames on the internet. Before I knew it, I had already acquired 17 individual frames to get me started! I plan to create a minimum of four Micro Paintings per week until I feel like I have gotten it out of my system and feel satisfied that I have exhausted the possibilities of this concept. With so many unique, handcrafted frames out there I cannot envision stopping soon. I am so thrilled to be adapting and evolving and to be excited about a new series. This is what a painter lives for. And I believe when you see them, they will still fit in and be a nice addition to my “Voice”, style and body of work.
Here is a sample of the first four below. I hope you enjoy! If you like and feel like purchasing one or more, you can do so here:
I hope you enjoy and find some inspiring new ideas of your own. Keep creating and evolving!