Intuition and the power of you

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How often do you trust your instincts, your intuition? Sometimes, that’s all we have. I should probably do it more often, especially in the physical sense when I’m creating a piece of art. The same holds true in life: you overthink things, play it safe and go with what you know; or you can branch out, take risks, live up to your potential. Of course, you don’t want to be reckless, but maybe trusting our intuition every once in awhile is a good thing. I’ve noticed that the paintings I try and overthink usually don’t turn out as I planned, while the ones that I let my instincts completely take over are the ones that seem to be my best work. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I’m just not a planner or researcher when it comes to painting. Some artists plan, make notes, research, and I think that’s great if that is the way you work best. I do try and follow the basic laws of color and composition theory while painting, but the freeing nature of literally going with the flow is what really excites me, and I’ve noticed that in my day-to-day progress through life as well, my intuition has been right more often than not. So I guess I’m saying to trust yourself more. You have more power in your intuition than you realize. The detail shot of the piece below reflects a more intuitive process. The finished piece is here:¬†https://www.terriedwardsart.com/abstracts-available-for-purchase-1/raising-a-ruckus

“Raising a Ruckus”
Mixed media on canvas

raisingaruckus (1)

 

My problem child

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This was my “problem child.” It has a completely different painting underneath it, with lots of bright colors. As you can see, this is anything but! More toned down, with spring-like, pastel colors, which I seem to gravitate more towards. I’m really struggling with trying to find my style, or my “voice.” There are so many techniques and styles that I love, that it’s hard to choose one, and that’s why you’ll see a lot of variety in what I do. I would love for my art to be instantly recognizable but, at the moment, I don’t see that happening. Does anyone else have this problem? I would be interested in your suggestions and comments! For now, I’ll just keep plugging away, doing what I love, and let the paint fall where it may.

P.S. It’s available on my website. ūüôā ¬†¬†https://www.terriedwardsart.com/abstracts-available-for-purchase-1/mamas-flower-garden

“Mama’s Flower Garden
10″ x 10” mixed media abstract on canvas

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Detours

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I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the unexpected detours my life’s journey has taken me. I think we all have a certain set of expectations as we mature, but fate has a way of intervening; what if I’d married a different person? (not a dig at my husband, just what- iffing!); what if we hadn’t moved to a large city? Then there are the small, day-to-day detours; the unexpected encounters with strangers, or a literal traffic detour on the way to or from work. Are we open to these detours? Do we make the most of the chance encounter and use it as a moment of grace to help another human (or animal!) in need? And what about the literal detours; I know I get very impatient if my route home gets diverted in any way, so lately I’ve tried to adopt a new strategy by cranking up my classical music in my CD player (yes, I still play CDs), or finding a good rock and roll tune on the satellite radio and rocking along. I need to get humble frequently and remind myself that I’m not the center of the universe. Maybe it’s time to accept that sometimes the very best experiences occur along these figurative and literal detours. The piece below is an alcohol ink piece I sold to a collector several ago, and I chose it to share because the title is fitting. Happy traveling!

https://www.terriedwardsart.com/

“Current and Ripples” Alcohol ink on artist panel

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Energized by the process

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My first solo show is a little less than a month away! I thought I’d give a little sneak peek into what I’m going to be exhibiting and a little about the process. Below is an image of one of the pieces I’m preparing for the show and, I have to say I’m so energized getting ready for this, more so than I think I’ve ever been. And I think that’s what it’s all about; not necessary the end result, although that part is important, but the journey to get there, the creative part, reaching deep and doing things you’ve never done before.

In this piece I’m playing with scraps of paper over an older piece that I first painted over with acrylics. I didn’t really like where that was going, although some of the paint is still showing, so I began adding paper scraps from previous mixed media collages I’ve done over the years (I have a plastic bin that I put all those little scraps in; I knew they’d come in handy one day!). Of course I’m still tinkering with this, looking for ways to tie all the components together, but so far I’m enjoying the almost chaotic process of this one. No title yet. Suggestions?

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Luck has nothing to do with it

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“Throw your dreams into space like a kite and you do not know what it will bring back – a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country. ~ Anais Nin

The best part of life is that we do not have to have the same life day after day, month after month, year after year. If we are determined enough, we can improve our lives at any time. ~ from Positive Quotes for Every Day by Patricia Lorenz

I just watched a very powerful short video by one of those life coaches (yes, I do occasionally find what they have to say interesting and beneficial). His basic message was to stop playing the same message in your head day after day, the victim mentality. I’m very guilty of this at times. I tend to believe that other successful people simply have had better luck than I. I realize they work hard, but I’ve also thought that they are just more “worthy,” and have been in the right place at the right time. This coach says STOP IT! Luck has nothing to do with it, and when you say this, you’re playing the victim. Today I’m going to go forth and not give in to this habit; I’m not going to let these excuses take hold in my thoughts. There is power in your mindset. Are your dreams talking to you?
“Dream Whispers” – Terri Edwards, 2016 –https://www.terriedwardsart.com/abstracts-av‚Ķ/dream-whispers

dreamwhispers

The artist’s world

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Having faith in yourself is imperative. Keep creating, and keep marketing. Have faith in your work. And even if it doesn’t sell in your lifetime, who cares? Some of the world’s most gifted artists never sold a piece of work in their lifetimes. Art lives in its own sphere, forever. from “Positive Quotes for Every Day” ~ Patricia Lorenz
“I cannot help it that my paintings do not sell. The time will come when people will see that they are worth more than the price of paint.” ~ Vincent van Gogh
This particular quote from van Gogh turned out to be a prophetic one, and a huge understatement. And it coincides with my blog post from yesterday. But instead of limiting this narrative to the artist, I think it could be applied to any walk of life, no matter the person or circumstances. Even if you’re not as successful as you would’ve hoped, at least you lived a more fulfilling, purposeful life in the process.
¬†“Vase with Pink Roses” – Vincent van Goghunnamed

Paper cuts

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For the last couple of days, I’ve been going back to my roots, so to speak, to my first creative activity passion, playing with vintage papers/mixed media collage. Continuing with the urban decay theme, I’m experimenting with getting the same effect with paper and paint. ¬†Here’s my progress so far (yes, I realize the building doesn’t line up; I’m playing at this point. ūüôā )

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When using vintage papers in my work, I’m curious about the original owners of these papers, their lives, families, sorrows, and joys. I love the idea of taking a little piece of another’s history and incorporating it into my own pieces. This piece is far from finished; there will ultimately be more layers and paper and paint. I hope you’ll stay with me.

 

Peace,

Terri

Urban decay

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Just a quick update to show what I’ve been working on. I love old, worn surfaces: crumbling building facades, patinas timeworn to a glowing luster, buildings full of character in ancient cities and locales across the world. So, I’m starting a new art series called Urban Decay/Timeworn, and here are a couple of the results. ¬†Please feel free to comment or give constructive criticism. The pieces are simple in nature, using colors that might be found in quaint cities in France, Germany, Italy, etc., and using lots of great texture and various mark-making tools to heighten the effect. Working on this series gives me a chance to travel from my work space to these glorious places, full of history and charm. I hope you’ll join me, or take a moment yourself to research an old city or two, and let it take you away to another time.

http://www.teresaedwardsart.com/

WIP, “Hidden in Provence”

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“Cafe in Paris”

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“Street in Provence”

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“The beauty remains; the pain passes”

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Henri Matisse and Pierre Auguste Renoir were great friends. The story goes that one day, while watching Renoir struggle in pain to apply paint to canvas, Matisse asked his friend, “Auguste, why do you continue to paint when you are in such agony?” Renoir replied, “The beauty remains; the pain passes.”

I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis a few years ago and, naturally, this diagnosis would be devastating for an artist. Fortunately, very fortunately, it is very manageable for me right now, with only some stiffness and mild pain upon waking. Once I’ve flexed my fingers, I’m good to go. However, I’ve asked myself many times, “what if it becomes crippling, to the point I can’t paint anymore?” ¬†But you know what? I refuse to allow that possibility to consume me. Others with disabilities far worse than my mild condition overcome great obstacles to continue sharing their beautiful, inspiring work with the world. They are my heroes, a light in dark times. Their beauty remains, and we are the more enriched because of it.

I think¬†that we all have a light, some everyday magic that we can all cultivate to be heroes to someone, somewhere, if we just keep moving and sharing our gifts with the universe. It may be something seemingly insignificant to you, but to someone else, it could mean the world. I hope you’ll find that light or, if you’ve already found it, that you’ll keep pressing on, through adversity, roadblocks, and setbacks. I’ve learned that nothing worth having comes easily, so I continue to paint, paint, paint.

“Everyday Magic”
Abstract mixed media
12″ x 12″
http://www.teresaedwardsart.com/gallery/abstracts

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Mistakes Happen

Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.

~ Scott Adams

I’m going to state the fairly obvious here. And I know it’s been quoted in various ways in motivational speeches and books for years: allow yourself to make mistakes. Perfection does not exist. I think it bears repeating because sometimes some surprising work comes from a place of uncertainty, or from an “oops” moment, as was the case for this little piece. ¬†This piece began as something else entirely, but I had more interest in this after it was completed than anything else I was selling at the time. I abandoned myself to the process and went where it took me. It was fun, and it showed me that rules CAN be broken in creativity. I have recently¬†finished a book on the creative process, and the author LOVES mistakes, and even goes so far to suggest that a degree in the arts, or in English, or whatever, can oftentimes be detrimental to creativity, even stifling, because you feel as though you have to follow certain rules and can’t stretch the imagination or play. (Note: she was in no way suggesting that a degree is unnecessary, just to not let it pigeon-hole you into a rigid way of thinking or doing things.) Something to remember when mistakes happen.

“Beautiful Chaos” (alcohol ink on artist panel)

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