I'm getting ready to paint a large figure painting for Bianca Benson. She and her husband want a painting for their bedroom. It's exciting because it has been a long time since I've drawn or painted nude figures. The big, black leather portfolio made it's way out of storage this week and I've been going through some of my past work. These are my most recent drawings - over a decade old. Done in a class taken at PNCA - back when PNCA was small and located at Portland Art Museum.
From the late 80s to the late 90s I moved around the US so much that I got really good at purging - unfortunately I may have gotten too good because I didn't keep many drawings or figure studies from my days at Columbus College of Art & Design. I managed to hold onto this self portrait.
I loved that shirt! It was my father's and it was my favorite painting smock. When he passed in 1985 I wore that shirt and his big flannel robe until they were tattered and torn.
Over the last two years I've discovered that I really love painting. I love creating compositions, mixing color, studying value. But I've been away from painting and drawing for so long I struggle daily with my two brains.
I spent most of my childhood, teens and young adult life in my right brain - drawing and painting, living in my imagination. Then I left it all for the corporate world where I spent 15 years in my left brain marketing products, building databases, analyzing data, figuring out corporate politics. During those 15 years I tried very hard to keep my right brain in use as a way to keep my wits about me, saving me from corporate stress.
When I started my business almost six years ago I realized those 15 years were going to help a lot with the day-t0-day business. However, I was going to need to get out of my own way if I really wanted to build the mural/fine art aspect of my business. Unfortunately I didn't realize this until three years ago when I met Andrea Tober and was taking one of her mural classes. I came face-to-face with myself and really saw the perfectionist in me, and realized how much of a controlling person I had become. It's been a challenge to move out of my own way and it will take more time before I'm not controlling what goes onto my canvas. But in the last three years I've gotten so much better. I really have Jennifer Carrasco, William Cochran, Pierre Finkelstein and Andre Martinez to thank. All of them are wonderful, nurturing teachers. Most importantly they have taught me to constantly think about speed, not to fear paint, observe the world around me with a creative eye, explore my talent, be creative on a daily basis, and nurture myself.
I wish each day I could turn the world upside-down or spend my day hanging just to visualize the world in a different way and shake up my left brain. What about you? How do you shake up your brain hemispheres?