I probably spend more time looking at my paintings while in progress than I do a painting. They have to tell me what to do, so I look and wait. If I painting gets stone-cold quiet it goes up on the wall and I just look and wait while I start the next one. I usually do this apprehensively because each painting speaks a different language and this forces me to be trilingual should the painting on the wall choose to speak up out of the blue.
That thing, this big and shaped like this!
It is always interesting to me what catches my eye/mind. This is in two parts. The first part is painting is a process where I am told that I need a certain color, shape, size, texture, whatever, etc. My most outrageous request happened to me in a shared studio space in Boston. It had to be silver, layered, almost canvas width, flexible, organic shaped… what a challenge! I sat and thought, and thought, and thought, and “aha!”. Now before I tell you, you need to understand that when I have such a revelation, I need the solution NOW. This particular revelation took me outside to take the intertube out of the tire of my bicycle parked outside. It was snowing at the time so I moved rather quickly. I knew I was walking distance from my house and had a replacement tube in my apartment, so no biggie. Whew! Problem solved.
Now the second part is not about a painting in the process but rather the identification of a tool or object that catches my eye. These revelations have had me jump into a couple of dumpsters in the past. If it is a tool then it is usually one I need (e.g. bicycle intertube) for current work in process. If it is an object of interest I know that it will be “my muse” for an upcoming piece. This cannot be a solitary reason for painting. The whole idea needs to come to mind to inspire the addition of another object to add to the composition (e.g. bicycle intertube). If the idea does not become concrete in my mind then I bid the beautiful object adieu and it goes back in the dumpster, apprehensively of course.
Poor understanding family
Television is not of interest to me unless there is a good Marvel movie on (visually stimulating). For my family though, binge-watching can be a thing on a quiet Saturday. As I am downstairs painting I have one of these immediate needs that my painting in progress had communicated to me. As stated previously… I need it NOW. I hustle around the house looking at everything. Room to room. Ugh, cannot find that “thing”. Last resort is for me to barge into the living room, holding up my hands, and asking in a desperate tone, “Do any of you know of a round thing, this big, with a flexible end and a curved end with this diameter?” I get the infamous 5-second stare, and maybe 3 seconds of consideration, and finally a person or two apologizes for not really knowing of anything matching my description. With a big sigh and a thank you, I turn and start pacing the house again. I usually find something in the garage or can make it by breaking something.