Why does an Artist feel compelled to make Art? This is one of the questions that came to me today while I was cleaning my art studio. It caused me to think about what inspires me to make art. Giving me a wonderful opportunity to explore some of the reasons that I have been collecting and storing items to use in future art projects. It was a great way for me to get the creative juices flowing and to forget that the original goal of what I was really doing was “cleaning”.
I started to think about why I feel so strongly about making art. Why am I sitting in the middle of the floor surrounded by all of this “stuff”? What is my motivation? The best explanation that I could come up with that seemed concise and not a rambling discourse, “I make art to help me make sense of the world that I live in”. I take in all the ideas, visuals, conversations and everything thing else that I am exposed to… good, bad and the indifferent and all of this gets processed in my head. The art that I create is my response to what has mentally and emotionally move through me.
It is with this information that I am given the raw material to build a foundation for the artwork. Often the ideas or concepts will race through my mind as a natural progression of word associations that from an outsider’s perception would be view as nothing more than randomness. These are then mixed with feelings and emotions that are stimulated during the process. The journey of the making of the art moves me forward along this path. Sometime this is a path that is organized and goes through the best part of the neighborhoods and other time this path is a little more scary, lets just say a little more primal and less refined, as I have said many times before, “The brighter the light, the darker the shadow”. You just need to have a strong conviction and push your way through to the other side. All of these things mixed together define why I make Art. It is what fills my life with purpose and meaning.
If there is one thing I have learned that helps me, as an artist. In order for me to make art and maintain some level of sanity. I need to be able to adapt and become fluid in the course of the day. At any given moment, things may seem to crumble and start falling apart. It is helpful to have the ability to be able to “switch to damage control” and redirect your creative energy.
This is the preferred goal, but I must admit it is one that I am not always able to achieve, but it is part of the creative process.