|Posted by email@example.com on June 26, 2015 at 11:45 PM||comments (112)|
WHAT DO YOU DO? “I AM AN ARTIST.”
June 22, 2015 by Hilda Lockley Rueda ·
How far into your artist career did you start answering to the ever-present question, “What do you do?” with a smile and an assertive reply “I AM AN ARTIST”? This is a query I presented to all my mentors at the beginning of my artistic career some years ago after switching from Petroleum Engineering and International business fields.
I would like to revisit this question once more on behalf of all those people out there considering changing paths in life and crossing the bridge to becoming full-time artists. To the question above, some artists said they always responded with “I AM AN ARTIST” but most replied that they avoided the question, sidetracked it, redirected it or simply ignored it to avoid the obnoxious looks from friends and family expecting them to have grown up and taken a “serious track.” In the words of the artist Ben Shahn, “I believe that if it were left to artists to choose their own labels most would choose none.”
Is an art career even worth pursuing? After all, only the most determined artists can sustain themselves with art-related income. Isn’t it true that many artists have been ignored all their lives only to be recognized for their vision, genius and creativity until much later after their deaths? We admire and revere the works of artists such as Brunelleschi, DaVinci, Caravaggio, Van Gogh, Modigliani, Vermeer, El Greco, Rembrandt, Gaugin and other artistic geniuses. Weren’t they for many years the outcasts or had careers marred by debt. Some, nobody knew about until their works were found in dark monasteries, forgotten and uncared for, then studied, revived and given the value they deserved, decades or even centuries after the artists were deceased?
“Starving Artist” is a cliché that has been casted by well-intentioned people to deter us from being successful and happy. Art is, in my opinion, a very rewarding career, but it is not an easy tag to put on your head and display proudly to those close to you. Art in our society tends to be perceived as the choice of irresponsible, unreliable people and that of dreamers. Family pressure to stir you out of your path is often very painful and difficult to overcome.
Of all those artist-to-be, some who are strong and stubborn enough will pursue an art degree even at the cost of their family disapproval. Others, like myself, will take up a different career altogether, following the advice of elders and peers. Those who persisted and managed to go to art school enjoy tremendously the learning process and the exhilarating sense of creating out of simple thoughts what they perceive as a reality. However when school was over, and there were no projects to submit, no classes to attend, no teachers to please and no peers to offer support, many art graduates found the irreconcilable truth that their creativity was drained and creating was now a painful process. Many went into other fields just to avoid the risk of displeasing the world. Many denied they were artists choosing to wear a different hat and label.
On the other hand, those of us for whom the influence of our peers, siblings, parents, teachers, guides succeeded in rerouting our destiny, go through life carrying with ourselves mixed feelings of guilt, remorse, regret and a sense of an unlived life, questioning who we are and what we are supposed to become, where and why we strayed. In both cases, it is only by the tenacious and persistent tug of your “true call” that a trained but forgotten artist in the first scenario or the hidden artist in the second, becomes a real artist.
Many people in the engineering, medical, science fields are returning home to what they feel is their true path: doing art. Workshops, ateliers, art schools, continuing education classes are full of those lost artists, talented, determined, ready to shake the shame off and create. I did it several years ago, transferring from petroleum engineering to art, without any previous knowledge or experience and not knowing where to start, but being blindly guided by an intense desire to do what I came here to do. I applaud those people, who like me years ago, are jumping in now, because giving up a financially prosperous career, steady income, promotions, benefits, stability, in lieu of a profession where nothing is certain, requires a monumental leap of faith and an unfathomable amount of perseverance and courage.
I can assure you, having been through it, that once on the other side, you will never regret it. The happiness of living your true call is absolutely priceless, especially when you can experience the most exhilarating moments immersed in your own creations and the immense possibilities that your mind will open to you in a creative career such as in the arts.
The transition cannot be left unplanned though. There are several strategies that you can use to make the leap less strenuous. I am listing below the ABC’s that personally helped me with a swift and smooth shift.
•Art books and guidance books such as Art and Fear by David Bayles and Ted Orland, The Artist Way by Julia Cameron and Accelerating on the Curves by Katharine T. Carter will boost your creativity and will help you find the courage and confidence needed for the switch.
•Be prepared. Prepare a financial plan that allows you to leave your current job without monetary distress. Assessing your resources, expenses and savings will reduce the pressure of meeting financial obligations on top of the transition.
•Connect. Find a mentor, willing to support you from the beginning. Look for artists whose art you admire and enquiry on mentorships. Contact art communities, Art Leagues, and colleges where you can associate with other artists. These groups will motivate you, and encourage you to improve and grow.
•Develop your skills by doing art daily and by registering for classes, workshops at art schools, art organizations or individual teachers near you. On this topic, I’ve heard this wise quote from Bart Lindstrom, “Step one is to get really good. Step two is to get out there. The better you do step one, the easier step two is.”
•Establish realistic goals both short and long term. Knowing where you want to go will help you see the opportunities available to reach your set objectives.
If you are in the midst of making the decision of crossing the bridge, I would recommend you to go ahead and do it. Start by proudly calling yourself AN ARTIST!
In the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson “What lies behind us and what lies before us is tiny matters compared to what lies within us.
|Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on May 24, 2015 at 3:35 PM||comments (204)|
Mobile Masters Make Art Instruction Accesible to Artist Anywhere
November 17, 2014 by Hilda Lockley Rueda ·2 Comments
CLAYTON J. BECK III-AN ARTIST WITH CHARACTER
FIGURE PAINTING WORKSHOP AT THE WOODLANDS ART LEAGUE, Sept. 8th-12th/14
The Woodlands Art League, www.woodlandsartleague.org , a 30+ year old, nonprofit visual art organization that operates in the Woodlands Tx,, was visited by Clayton J. Beck III, one of America’s more acclaimed and recognized artists. The Woodlands Art League is proud of housing more than 300 members, whose careers have been notably carved and enhanced by the training and knowledge visiting masters have provided throughout the years. Clayton, who was teaching his third workshop at WAL, is one of those artists who has enriched the league’s history not only by means of his unconventional training philosophy but also with his professional advice related to the improvement of the physical space necessary to produce better quality art, lighting, space distribution, etc. Robert Liberace, Judy Carducci, and many other masters have pitched in to make art instruction accessible to a whole Houston community, thus facilitating the means of progressive artistic development for all, and the cultural enhancement of the entire area.
Clayton, walked in with a confidence that is at the same time intimidating and reassuring. New artists were not sure what to make of his well-worn out hat which didn’t seem necessary in this “dark cave”, as he calls the wall to wall mirrored studio where WAL currently functions. As he introduced himself and the workshop, his eccentricities became less eccentric and turned into logical statements. Clayton, reminded us, artists, that nothing that shows up in the canvas is a mistake or an accident but the result of a thought we consciously or unconsciously deposit in the painting surface and that in order for our art to improve we have to recognize what those thoughts are and change them. He pointed out that not having a goal to strike for, at the beginning of a painting session is like getting in a car and start driving not knowing where you are going.
All artists have at one point or another attempted to do color charts but being frustrated we dropped the chore off the list. Clayton encouraged us all to complete them and used them. Debra Latham, one of the artist attendees, from Kingwood, Texas, when asked about the most important thing she had learned from Clayton’s workshop, puts it this way: “The biggest thing I learned was the importance of doing color charts. I’ve only dabbled with them a bit in the past but never to the extent he had gone to. He had such an elaborate way of doing them that I had never seen before. That is one thing on my near future “to-do” list”.
Is it in the light or is it in the shadow? All artists wrestled with that question while we attempted to look at the model as dispassionate as we could to avoid falling into the trap of painting eyes, mouths and hair instead of the patterns of the light and shadow, lost and found edges. We tried to take ownership of Clayton’s remarks, almost never addressed to an individual attendee but to the group in general, prompting us to put the brushes down and observe the model to collect certain information, before we pick them up again and decide where the next brushstroke is supposed to go.
Is It In the Light? Oil on linen, 20×16, and exercise on light
Hilda Rueda. www.hruedart.webs.com
Workshops like the one offered at WAL by Clayton are valuable for artists of every level. Beginners and advance students take pride on absorbing or recalling knowledge that will help them improve their artistic careers. Suzie Baker, an accomplished and nationally awarded artists, who also participated in the week- long course expresses her foremost lesson as follows:
During Clayton’s workshop, he mentioned several challenges as ways to break out of old ways of thinking, one challenge was to create a painting with no more than 10 brushstrokes per model session. So, let’s do the math: 6 session, 25min each, 10 strokes max per session, that’s 60ish strokes. The economical nature of this way or painting required a deliberate thoughtfulness. I had to spend more time mixing the right value and color of paint, choosing the right brush and amount of paint to load onto that brush, planning the brush stroke (angle, direction of pull and pressure of the stroke). The challenge was as rewarding as it was nerve wracking. Now, I just need to keep it up when Clayton isn’t watching over my left shoulder!”
Suzie Baker, www.suziebaker.com
“Keli in 60 Strokes or Less, 20 x 16“, Oil on Linen, 2014.
The week dwindled down as we attempted to recognize our own mistaken perceptions. We are determined to eradicate all those thoughts and habits, which although feel comfortable, hinder our progress and make us repeat the same mistakes over and over, piece after piece.
The guidance Clayton, and other masters, have provided us with, is invaluable, not only individually but as an art community which intends to be true to its mission of promoting the visual arts, enriching the general community trough art education and offering our artists easy access to professional instruction. We believe it is possible to make art available to all and it is through workshops with traveling masters that big groups can be reached at a reasonable price and at convenient locations and thus the goal of art-educating all can be achieved. Isn’t this the globalization of our art world? We genuinely so hope.
|Posted by email@example.com on October 22, 2013 at 1:10 AM||comments (0)|
Solapado esta el invierno en el sopor de este verano, en los cardos que se tuercen ingeniosos para alcanzar la luz de un sol eterno.
En los rincones oscuros de la eternidad inverve y en las alabanzas que se levantan como humo hacia un insensible dios etereo.
Solapado esta el futuro que se viste de presente para burlar los deseos y las ansias que nunca materializaran su espectro
Solapado en sonrisas que se mofan de la insolencia, de la rabia, del miedo, de la verdad incierta y de lo cierto incierto.
Solapado esta el recuerdo de lo que fui en el tiempo, un recodo limitado por los infames suenos de lo que quise ser y nunca fueron
Solapado esta murmurando a mi oido el tintineante resoplar del viento en la pradera donde muere el silencio, las dudas y los miedos
Solapado sin que logre divisar del arido minuto su sepulchral misterio, con el arrojo majestral de lo insensible y lento
Solapado musitando que no hay camino al ayer donde se pueda revivir el tiempo, que lo he perdido todo, arando en el desierto
Solapada esta mi mano queriendo construir con versos las imagines ineditas, pululantes e insanas, de humanidad ajenas
Solapada bajo el manto de mi ignorancia craza, mi necedad, mis ansias de bordear el horizonte para alcanzar el alba tierna.
Solapada con puas escabrosas retozando en la ladera del incognito destino, susurrando pensamientos intangibles y ligeros
Solapada, acosada por la furia impersonal que no libera, que ata, que somete bajo el vendabal tardio de un huracan de enero.
Solapada, sin que se rompan los lazos que se tejieron en inmemorables tiempos en espacios tan lejanos que lontananza olvida
Solapada, presa de la voz que sucumbe al sonido impenetrable de lo mustio, de lo muerto, de lo que reposa bajo tierra malquerida.
|Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on April 1, 2013 at 1:50 PM||comments (0)|
distancia, tiempo y nada, de que hablan?
Mienten, no he estado aquí, no, nunca
he volado en alas ajenas de luz blanca
y he escrito lirios, paginas y brazos
No he vivido aquí, vivir?? quien lo ha dicho?
no han crecido flores a mis pies?
no han bebido de mi fuente, los helechos
no han brotado palabras en mi lecho?
he llorado? que lagrimas me has abierto?
que llanto taciturno ha regado mis entrañas?
entrañas de atomos alados que se alejan
lagrimas que marfil y madreperla solo dejan
sombras ha creado mi frágil estructura
mis manos han creado sin crear y sin bravura
he recorrido caminos que no existen
que murieron, que borraron los destinos
destinos? nada existe, ni la sombra ni la luna
he pasado por este universo frágil y ligero
sin ser, sin nada sin la nada de un suspiro
he dejado una estela que no guia mas augura
senti, senti que mi existencia era nada
y al sentirla descubri que era verdad
verdad que nada tiene mas que algidas palabras
porque verdad sin mentira no es verdad mas vaciedad
soy la luz, la sombra lo eterno y lo efimero
soy parte tierra, agua mar y horizonte
soy de todo y nada, de un aquí muerto y etereo
soy, no soy, quien lo sabria, nadie sabe.
|Posted by email@example.com on April 1, 2013 at 1:40 PM||comments (1)|
Despertar quisiera de este sopor que me arrebata. Despertar a una luna de verano y ver las olas sumergirse en el infinito espectro.
Despertar quisiera del dolor de perder lo que siempre crei ser y no fui. A la nostalgia de dejar atras lo que el pasado no reconoce como historia, ni legenda, mi mito, ni verdad, ni sueno.
Despertar quisiera a la verdad agazapada bajo la mentira lisonjera, a los besos frios de una manana en primavera.
Despertar quisiera a un ayer sin muros, ni murallas, a un ayer despoblado de deseos y de ansias.
Despertar quisiera de esta luz que me ciega y me desvela, de lo que quiero sentir y sentir no puedo.
Despertar de esta agonia quisiera para caminar despacio bajo la lluvia incierta de lo irreparable y yerto.
Despertar al sepulcro socavado de nimiedad y espera, mi corazon quisiera, pero no basta querer, porque el destino se permuta por instantes, negocia la paz en contrabando y se mofa de lo que mi insensibilidad prefiere.
Si solo despertar pudiera, dejaria mis pies remojar en el pantano fetido de los temores crazos y despues del tiempo subiria inverbe a las limpidas montanas sin percibir el olor de la nieve fria, ni la soledad macilenta que duerme a mi alrededor, ni el sopor tintineante que se aglomera en mis sentidos.
Si solo despertar pudiera!
|Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on April 1, 2013 at 1:20 PM||comments (102)|
I lost you and me and everything in between.
I lost my light, my hope and my future.
I lost the forbidden dreams that we dreamt and the hours I spent dreaming.
I lost the trail that led to you and found a pool to wash my face after that eternal sojourn.
I lost your smile, and mine fell asleep under the shadows of your grave.
I lost the spark that kept me alive and the life you sparked on me.
I lost my muse and now I walk numbed and unconscious in the sea of dark,
I lost my arms in the battle to redeem my soul and my heart trying to conquer the unconquerable.
My skin is now rough with the scars of unfulfilled promises and untamed desires.
I lost the treasures that you hid behind your unpredictable story and i lost the wish to ever find them again.
The air between us is stagnant and unbridgeable and the words despicable and unreachable.
I lost the north that guided me and I do not mind it anymore.
I find myself mesmerized by the indomitable past and the roads I walked to find you.
I lost my ground and my sense of belonging and my home is now the rustling of the wind in the disappearing trees.
I lost what I thought I had, and never did.
I lost what my ego called mine by birth right and discovered I was never born in you.
I lost my ability to see the soul that bears me and the transparency of time and pain.
I lost the words to come to you and everything has disappeared under the fog of your vile nature.
Nothing grows under my feet and the path behind me is a desert of desire and hate.
I am lost, please don’t come back to look for me…….
|Posted by email@example.com on April 1, 2013 at 1:00 PM||comments (85)|
Soy la suma de lo que pude ser y no fui y de lo que fui y no quise ser.
Soy la suma de mis deseos reprimidos y las represiones indeseadas,
soy el fruto de los suenos de mis noches de insomio y las pesadillas de mis suenos realizados.
Soy la suma de todos los espacios vacios que otros antes de mi y despues de mi han dejado,
soy la suma de lo que deje atras para llegar hasta aqui y de lo que dejo hoy para volver al pasado y reconstruirlo.
Soy al mismo tiempo semilla tierra flor y fruto, al mismo tiempo ayer y hoy, al mismo tiempo lo construido durante la paz y la destruccion total durante la guerra.
Soy lo que mis padres, mis hermanos mis amigos mis ancestros no fueron y a la vez la compilacion de todos ellos.
Soy mis hijos y el trabajo de mis manos y el reposo deseado y los hijos que no tuve.
Soy lo que escribi y las palabras que existian potenciales a ser dichas y fueron nunca escogidas por mi verso.
Soy todos los lugares que mis pies pisaron y pisaran y todos aquellos que inaccesibles fueron a mi historia.
Todos los amores que me amaron y aquellos que siendo amados se marcharon y aun aquellos con quienes los caminos se cruzaron incognitos y ajenos
Soy lo que la historia me ha contado, lo que otros escribieron en su ayer presente y la constelación hacia la que dirijo mi deambular austero en busca de un horizonte donde anclar mi barca.
Soy lo que debí ser porque mis pasos son el eco de mi historia y lo que de mi no se esperaba, tambien soy, porque aquello modela mi existencia.
Soy la suma de millones de genes transmutando el tiempo y el espacio para llegar al futuro inmaterial que transforma la fantasía en sueňo y el sueňo en esperanza.
I am the sum of what I could had been and I wasn’t and that that I was and didn’t want to be.
I am the sum of my repressed desires and the undesired repressions.
I am the fruit of the dreams of my nights of insomnia and the nightmares of my accomplished dreams,
I am the sum of all the empty spaces that others before me and after me left behind.
I am the sum of what I abandoned to arrive here and of what I renounce to, today to go back to the past and rebuild it.
I am at the same time seed, soil, flower and fruit. At the same time yesterday and today. At the same time what was built during peace and the total destruction during war.
I am what my parents, my brothers, my friends, my ancestors were not, and at the same time the compilation of all of them.
I am my children and the work of my hands, and the desired repose and the children I didn’t have.
I am what I wrote and the words that were potential to be said and were never chosen by my verse.
I am all the places that my feet trod and will tread, and all of those that were inaccessible to my story.
All the lovers who loved me and all of them who, though being loved, walked away, and even those with whom our paths crossed incognitos and disaffected.
I am what history told me; what others wrote in their present yesterday and the constellation towards which I aim my austere wander, seeking a horizon where to anchor my boat.
I am what I was supposed to be, because my steps are the echo of my history, and that, which was not expected from me, I also am, because that molded my existence.
I am the sum of millions of gens transmuting time and space to arrive at the immaterial future that transforms fantasy into dreams and dreams into hope.
|Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on March 18, 2012 at 8:55 PM||comments (106)|
Hoy hui de mi, y entre mis huesos encontre tu voz, vacia como el silencio eterno,
Hui de mi pero encontre entre mis cenizas un rostro malnutrido y taciturno, que mirardome silencioso murmuraba tu nombre sempiterno
Y eras tu quien me miraba, eras tu, o yo, el yo que no sabe mas quien es, el yo que busca tras tu sombra la alegria que hoy se marcha entre tinieblas
Si, hui de mi, pero olvide dejar bajo mi tumba el regazo de mi cuerpo desolado y lo halle simple, fragil, em pedazos, destrozado.
Si, hui de mi, pero en aquellos ojos mustios, socabados y arrogantes halle lo que faltaba de esperanza, unos miedos, unas risas sofocantes. Se que hui porque mi huella estaba escrita sobre la arena muerta.
Se que hui porque encontre mis vestidos destrozados como de alma hierta
Se que hui porque aunque junto a ti mi sangre estaba no sentia ni amor, ni alma, ni pasion ni rabia, ni hoy ni ayer ni atardecer ni malva