Sunday, November 29, 2009

Stepping Up

I finished another one in my pod series to put in our Portland Art Collective show this week. I was experimenting with a couple things in this one, titled "Stepping Up". First, I wanted to see how low I could put the focal point without it throwing off the composition. Second, I usually work with complementary colors, so wanted to try monochromatic this time. I'm really happy with the cool, watery look and the depth of this one.

You can see others in this series here and here, and another, with the process described, here.

I am busily finishing up show stuff this week, trying to stay sane through it all. I've been thinking about one of the best lessons I ever had about being in shows. When I first started showing my work, I was thrilled to be juried into Local 14, a very popular and competitive art show in Portland. Because of my natural shyness and all my insecurities about whether my work was worthy to be in the show, I was really happy that I didn't have to man a booth and interact with the public at this show. I did, however, have to work some at the show.

Imagine my horror when the first place I was stationed to work was directly across from my display. I could see and hear all public reaction without the buffer of politeness from them knowing the artist was sitting there listening. Once I could finally lift my head to see what was going on, I discovered that many people passed by with only a disinterested glance. Others stopped and looked closely. And then, thankfully, some lit up when they saw my work, brought friends over, and even bought it.

Later in the day, I was stationed by the work of one of the most prominent artists in the show, a woman whose work I admire and covet. And guess what? The public reaction was just the same. Granted probably more actually bought her work, but many had no interest in it at all.

It was a great lesson in following your own instincts and not getting caught up with what others think about your work. It will never please everyone.

Now back to work, with the hopes that I will at least please some.


Paula McNamee said...

Robin, your painting is gorgeous- I like the depth and underwater feel to it. I want to know what's around the bend. The shadows add a lot to the piece along with good value contrasts. Thanks for sharing your wisdom about showing art and others reactions to it.

ger said...

...I´m sure you will... + I agreee with Paula about the depth + underwater feel ...

Suzanne Reynolds said...

This is beautiful, Robin. Love the dimensional effect and monochromatic scheme. I like what you had to say about putting your work out there. I try to do what I enjoy creating and not worry so much about whether someone else will like it.