Face/About Face

January is coming to a close and with it my mindful writing posts for 2019. I have not focused too much writing about my visual art mainly because I feel (the operative word here) that I’m in a slump sorts. It is the black vortex that all artists face, sometimes after a particularly productive period and sometimes not. It is the most difficult aspect (for me) to deal with: an uninspired, I don’t know what I want to paint, unchallenging and utterly bored/boring  bump in the road. During these drought-like periods, painting often feels like a chore and production does not stop altogether, however the output or finished piece is not exciting to the artist. Pablo Picasso famously stated:

“Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.”

And so we do work and plow through these lulls which can last for weeks/months and sometimes for years. Every artist in every genre who is truly a creator, explorer and seeking to grow her/his artistry must work their way through the dull-as-a-dishwasher cycles to breakthroughs. For a fledgling artist this can feel like a first crushing heartbreak and that feeling of “oh no–not again” for the veteran creator. It’s not something you ever imagine could happen when you first fall in love with your vision/passion, and you never want, expect or prepare to end. But end it does bringing with the angst–necessary change for greater creative growth and a deeper more nuanced love. Inspiration is another archetype that walks along side us often at her own quirky pace. She must also find you hungry and willing to surrender to her fire.

The painting below seems to have evolved on its own. I don’t know where it came from, but I’m guessing my fiery muse had something to do with it.


until my brush sneaks past me
lost in the paint


Mindful Writing a la 2019

Party over
a few crumbs
and the moon
to nibble on.

And so it begins again–the practice of mindful writing for January. Crumbs are words offered here as small stones: a small stone is a short piece of writing that precisely captures a fully-engaged moment. This will be my eighth year, and I’m sure the moon will surface in these writings along with, blue, gratitude, whimsy, wonder and hopefully humor.

I’m not as enthusiastic at this time to write or paint, however the best way to plow through these artist slumps is to practice. A nibble here and there often leads to bouquets and banquets. At least I can say that I’m trying. And then again, there’s always the moon…