I’m reading a cool new book, “Show Your Work!” by Austin Kleon (the same person who wrote ‘Steal Like an Artist’ (I did a post on that book awhile back). And if I were really good at this I’d include a link right here in this very sentence so you could just click on over to it…but then again, that’s why I have to read these types of books…I’m not very good at this.
But I’m learning.
And, as it turns out, being an amateur isn’t such a bad thing to be – according to the author.
Here’s a little appetizer from the book:
…’We’re all terrified of being revealed as amateurs, but in fact, today it is the amateur – the enthusiast who pursues her work in the spirit of love (in French, the word means “lover”), regardless of the potential for fame, money, or career – who often has the advantage over the professional. Because they have little to lose, amateurs are willing to try anything and share the results. They take chances, experiment, and follow their whims. Sometimes, in the process of doing things in an unprofessional way, they make new discoveries. “In the beginner’s mind, there are many possibilities,” said Zen monk Shunryu Suzuki. “In the expert’s mind, there are few.”
The above image is a blend of two of my creative loves: photography and encaustic painting. Two things I am very much enamored of and I am an amateur of both of them.
While painting in encaustic this weekend I found myself mesmerized by the colors melting on the palette. The juxtaposition of the colors and the shapes they made were simply too beautiful to clean off. It was a real dilemma! I needed to clear a space on the palette but couldn’t bear to wipe it off! So I did the next best thing – I photographed it.
I don’t know how many other people get genuine pleasure from browsing images they’ve made – but I do. I really do. Its not an arrogance – its simply a love of imagery. And it doesn’t have to be a beautiful sunset or flower; in fact, rarely is it ever those things.
Its the not so extraordinary – the very ordinary that usually captures my attention.
And today it was my paint palette.
I blended the image of my encaustic painting “On Monet’s Pond (see previous post) into the image of my paint palette and then added the birds and a weathered filter (using Blender app).
I like the timeworn look and feel; and its colors remind me of faded summer memories.