It’s Not Always Sunny

I remember a long time ago, when the “cable guy” had to come to wire or fix my cable. The cable connection was in my studio – really, the back bedroom. I had just finished a large oil painting – all dark blues and moody – and it was still on the easel. As he was going about his business, he kept looking at it.

Finally he said, “It’s awful dark, isn’t it?”. And I said, “Yes, that’s how I have been feeling lately”.

I could see what I said slowly dawning on his face as he utterly learned something new. He shook his head and said something like how it never realized art could be that way.

Yeah. It can be that way. of course it is. Yes, you can paint sunny flowers when you want to kill the world but your mood will still color your work. It has to. It is you. You are not a machine.

I was all gung-ho on getting this blog up and running. I have at least a dozen posts saved as drafts waiting to be tweaked and posted. Yet, have posted nothing in almost 2 months.

I have several paintings half-finished. Nothing.

I’ve been sick. A lot of tests. A lot of napping. A lot of sitting lost in a fog. I am pretty sure it will all come out all right but I am exhausted.

I am gray.

And what I’ve found is when I do sit down to paint for even just a minute, the paintings are gray. And dull. There’s no spark in me right now and no spark left for art.

Yes, art can be that way.

Usually the cure – for me – is to get out. Take a walk. Go to the beach. Get my batteries recharged, so to speak. But sometimes things are just gray – for awhile.

I write this to say, “This happens.” And also to say, “This too shall pass”. Don’t be ashamed or embarrassed or hopeless if it the sun goes behind a cloud for you. For awhile. I can imagine if you are new to painting that it might be easy to give up. To say that you are just hopeless at this. But that’s probably not true.

Keep trying. You never know what might happen.

How do you get the sun to come out again?

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