This week I show a new painting “Call of the Sun” and talk about finding clarity in art. This week’s post is especially for you who feels that your art is all over the place and you have no artistic direction.
Auringon kutsu – Call of the Sun, acrylics, 50 x 70 cm. Click the image to see it bigger!
The Child and The Adult – Who Do You Serve?
I used to think there are two kinds of artists – those who like to play and dream, and those who are more ambitious and aim to express their deepest emotions. Just recently, when I started this new painting, I asked myself: “What do you want to paint, Paivi?” And the answer was: “Horses!”
– You can’t paint horses only!
– Because there’s more that needs to come out.
There was. There is. My inner child wants me to paint horses, but I am an adult too. If all my art is playful illustrations, I am desperately missing the adult in me.
Concrete vs. Abstract
The adult in me wants to work in a way that does not appeal to the child. The expression is more intuitive and abstract and thoughts less concrete. I feel free when painting like this. It’s like life travels through me, and it heals my soul. It makes me feel that this is the best that art can offer.
But I also feel free when I grab a more childish painting. I imagine talking to the horse and how it responses with gentleness.
This, too, is the best that art can offer – the connection to childhood, to the person who didn’t want much more than a pet of her own.
The Child and the Adult – Don’t Lose Either One
Nowadays, my studio is both the playroom and the space for meditation. The inner adult needs to paint with the inner child and vice versa.
If the child gets neglected, other people’s expectations step in, and I lose myself. If the adult is away, I focus too much on the tangible things. Then the invisible side of the experience doesn’t come through. This realization has helped me in finding clarity for my art.
What are Invisible and Intangible Things?
Examples of intangible things that we can visualize in art:
- communicating the atmosphere with nature’s elements like light, air, and wind
- expressing emotions that contain mixed feelings, for example, the combination of love and melancholy
- inventing creative concepts like seeing similarities in the structure of plants and bridges
- focusing on experiences like flying instead of painting a bird
When we omit these kinds of intangible things, we are in danger of only creating shells rather than expressing a spirit.
Viewers Have Child and Adult Too
As viewers, we also have both sides: the child and the adult.
I painted a dragonfly for your inner child to play with while the adult can ponder about the more abstract strokes.
Sometimes simple lines and colors can express more than realistic objects.
Finding Clarity and Balance for Art-Making
For a long time, I haven’t been happy about my art. Especially this fall, it has changed. I have found what my child needs to be satisfied with the result, and what pleases the adult in me. Surprisingly, being able to satisfy the child has been crucial for me to getting forward in abstract painting. This one is in progress, and you will get more pics and stories about it when it’s finished.
What do you think? Are you in the journey of finding clarity for your art? What would need to change in your art so that both the child and the adult are happy? Tell me, I am interested to know!