Thursday, April 19, 2012

What (really) keeps me from drawing / painting

Following my last post "Does someone can tell me...??? " and the few comments that I received (mostly on a forum), I was able to put some ideas at the right place.

First things first: thanks to the ones who took the time to leave me a comment. It did help me to put those ideas in place! =)

1) Accessing the "artistic mode"
When I'm working on visual art, I need to "build a bubble" around me in which I can escape. I often called that state of mind a "bubble" or "being in an artistic trance". Since I have read "Drawing on the right side of the brain », from Dr Betty Edwards", I have understood that in fact, I need to "shut my left cerebral hemisphere up" (side of logic, maths, language...) in order to let the right side (intuitive, creative, visual, artistic side...) take ALL the commands.

This is essential for visual art, because, according to the author Betty Edwards, the art is a very rare discipline that requires exclusively the right cerebral hemisphere (the majority, say almost all the other tasks needs a certain balance between both right and left side... not to mention all the tasks that requires mostly the left side. According to her, the main reason why so many can't "draw well": we live in a society which educates mostly the left side (logic, language, maths...) and let aside the right side...

This is surely the reason why I have the impression that I can't work my art in the presence of my daughter. She is young, she still needs a lot of attention and doesn't understand well that mommy works for a long time (that is to say for several hours in a row) on the same thing, while she gets disinterested most of the time after 10 to 15 minutes, like any child of her age. So I can't "build my bubble" in her presence (I need to remind that I have no sibling and as a child, I spent many solitary hours with all my time and the tranquility to release my artistic creativity, in visual art and writing alike).

2) Share art with my daughter
From "Custer" commentary (that you can read next to the same last post "here"):
"(...) Or make it a game with your daughter, get her to suggest something you should draw for her..."
Yes, this is a game we do for some time now. Among other things, it helps in her language development. Though she doesn't yet speak with as many vocabulary as the other girls of her age, she is interested with letters and sometimes asks us to write the words under the drawing we do for her.

I also started last fall to initiate her to painting (with gouache), a thing that I came to realize that many mommies fear to do or at least, don't know how to do this with a child that young (fear of making a mess, staining clothing, etc.)

Each time that I do these activities, I have as much pleasure to do it with my daughter than I feel some bitterness... First, she gets tired (too) quickly (for my taste), but as I was mentioning, it's normal at her age. Then, almost everything I do with her will end up "disappearing". Which calls for a third point.

Here's two example (my favorites) of painting my daughter did, with me.

3) The result of Art
In my last post ("Does someone can tell me...??? "), I was mentioning music. Music is one form of artistic expression that can be played and each new interpretation of a piece becomes unique (left aside that since more or less a century, we can henceforth record it and make it play to the infinity, which is recent in the history of humanity). Visual art for its part, likewise literature, are art forms that needs to be lay down on a support, paper or other and stay there.

I don't know if it's the fact that I have chosen those two form of art, visual and written... but I have this habit of caring about keeping the result of my art. Whether its a sketch, a study, something experimental, or a finished work worth being hang on the wall, I like to keep everything I do. This also applies for writing: all the planing, the research, parts of texts, the written questioning about a project, I keep everything (it's even easier in literature with the hard disk storage ; it's another thing when it comes to the visual art storage...)

So, though I love to share this initiation to painting with my daughter (and I even started to think about how to keep her experimentation into home-made portfolio), I don't have the time to express myself (since the goal is to show HER how to express herself! and she does it in a very short time).

All of this will change in time as she will grow up and that we'll be able to work side by side; I'll teach her how to use other medium than gouache and when she'll have more autonomy. This is only a matter of time.

Until then, I have about two hours a day (and still) of free time, when she sleeps and I'm not. I could use that time for personal projects (like at this moment, I'm using it to write this post). But because I already tried, there's not much I can do in two hours : either I take more than two hours late in the evening (which it's not recommended at five weeks away to give birth, to get too tired) ;o)  either she wakes up when I just start having fun.

There's one last option though that comes in mind as I write those lines : spring is here and it's often nice outside. I could try bringing some sketchbook or something at the park (normally, I bring a book and / or something to write). Last summer, I brought my water-painting at the swimming pool. My daughter came to draw by my side and when she was getting bored, she had to pool and all the kids to play around). I could try something alike, at the park. =)
(Wow! And like in a movie with arranged with the photography director, I get to this conclusion and I have the sunlight that falls on my face from the window!) =P

Monday, April 16, 2012

Does someone can tell me...???

I was impressed by the superb spring weather of this year, while I was telling myself that it was a shame that I'm not a musician or a singer. I did try music as a child and though I was not practicing as much as I was writing or drawing, I always loved music (as much as "playing music myself")... Well, childhood wound, long story... I'm not a musician.

I had that thought, among other, while thinking about French rap. I don't particularly like rap (but since my common-law-spouse is French, I hear about French rap slightly more often). Those young rappers and their songs denounce the social injustice, the political mistakes, etc. The French rap is often seen as "hateful", whereas what it wants (according to those young rappers) is to be the voice of truth that others wants to shut.

I'm not a musician and even less a rapper (it wouldn't be my style of music anyway!!) and I was founding this really sad in this period of lockout where I'd like to have a voice to be heard, with all what is happening now on the political scene... You know, the kind of music that "you can easily bring outside in the streets"... But I'm no singer nor music. What a pity.

And in the following instants, like if my cerebral right hemisphere (the one that is intuitive, creative, visual, artistic...) was answering to my left (side of logic, mathematics, language...), I started to have vision of images that would be representative of the messages I'd like to express. Eureka! I'm not a musician but I'm a drawer, painter and computer graphic artist! That is not nothing!

Back home... toc, there it goes again. This damn blockade that gets into me since too long. I don't know where to start, I freeze, I have the impression of "I don't have the time because I'm with my daughter" (while I haven't even tried anything yet). It's like if I was freezing in fear of not succeeding, fear of failure...

Failure of what?? Since when do I think about drawing in terms of "succeeding or failing", like if my life depended on it? Drawing, like painting, has always been an experience of enjoyment, like a game, experimentation, exploration (colors, techniques, different medium...), so where did it came to me this absurd idea of performance that keeps me from doing anything at all!?!

This is really irritating!
Does someone can tell me...???
Your comments on this matter are very welcome!!
Thank you!  =)

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The "after commentary"

It's been a long time since my last update.

After I've received commentaries linked to "2nd writing, 1st objectif reached", a bit like every time "after commentaries", I think a lot about what should I keep and what I should let go...

Among Élisabeth Vonarburg commentaries, (our "mentor" of the writing workshop), she points to the way the narrator tells the story. I thought it would be helpful to re-read of her book "Comment écrire des histoires" (translation: "How to write stories", a book that I suggest to everyone who aspires to professional literature; it's only available in French though).

It was a very good idea to re-read (I'm not finished yet). It's been years since I've read it the first time and it's very uplifting to have the memory refreshed at an important moment of my project.

Of course, my pregnancy getting close to the end (2 months to go before the due date), I'm getting tired faster and faster and every task of the every day's life needs more of my time, so... it's getting hard to find time left to work on my project, but my brain continues working on it.

I have to admit that in the course of the last few weeks, the events in this province (Québec) helds me in suspense. I'm talking about the university students in lockout against the raise of inscription fees to university. The movement, that I must watch passively from my computer (pain and tiredness of my pregnancy in the way; I can hardly walk more then 15 minutes without being in pain in the pelvis and bottom of my back and I almost need a day and a half to rest from a task like going for the week grocery or do the vacuum), brought me to get re-interested to the politic in general.

The politic situation, in Québec as well as in Canada, is not swell. It almost feels like witnessing the death of democracy on all fronts. I have read numbers of articles about federal and provincial politic, I'm watching movements of revolt everywhere around the world, watching documentaries on economy, why all countries are in debt... Many are in French, so I can't give example here, though there's this documentary (the beginning is interesting for the history of money and the base of economy):

The Money Fix - A Documentary for Monetary Reform:

Ou ce reportage (en anglais) qui avance une solution sur comment devrait se tourner la société du future :

Paradise or Oblivion:

Myweb surfing as much as the recent events are inspiring me a lot for a certain change on the "background" of my project.

My ideas are working a lot. I have many ideas for a couple of projects (and so little free time to start them). It's still well, because it's been some time since I haven't handle that many ideas, that many projects. It makes me feel more alive =D. I keep them in mind and I'll work on them as I have time. After all, kids are growing! And I prefer to be present in their life while they are young and ask for it.  ^_^