Sunday, December 13, 2015

Finding my way; One is a lonely number...

Well, after coming down off of the wonderful high and the equally powerful low from the recent ending of The Dress series exhibition at UW Parkside, it was time to get back in the studio. It can be an intimidating place when you face it with little or no direction. I need to get back into my playful spirit of creation and see where it might take me.

I had the awesome opportunity to meet and photograph this couple yesterday afternoon. I'm not sure if it's heading toward a project or will just be some beautiful photographs for this couple to enjoy. It was a great experience and for someone who enjoys the process as much as I do, that is satisfying in and of itself.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Where is my Muse?

A portrait of Elsie, one of more than 80 individuals I've photographed in the last four years for my fine art series, The Identity Project and The Dress. You ask most artists and they will often tell you that it's more about the process than it is the finished results. The results DO matter but the process is where you live and breath. That is certainly where my heart and mind is, as an artist. I love the process. The amazing people I've been so lucky to photograph over the last four years fill my heart and mind with great experiences and stories, through the conduit of the creative process. I was asked by one of my students at The Dress series reception, which of the portraits was my favorite? I looked around the gallery, I paused, I looked around some more, and said, "It changes all of the time." When you as a patron look at the work on the walls, you only see the portrait. When I look at the work I see the portrait, I hear the conversation during the 3 hour session, and I feel the connection that was made. I hope that the work can expose just a fraction of that creative and very personal process.

Once you finish a series that has enriched your life so much, you go through another process that is less pleasant but, I believe, equally important. Metaphorically I believe it is a little similar to what women experience after the birth of a child; not equal to but characteristic of "postpartum depression". After you finish a body of work that is very important to you, one you feel extremely connected to creatively, spiritually, and aesthetically, you face it's resolution of completion. To except that this process has come to an end is a scary realization as an artist. What will I do next? Will it be as good as what I have just completed? Will that muse reveal itself again? 

"Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work." Gustave Flaubert. It has been almost six months since I last created a piece of art, almost three months since The Dress series opened, and one and half weeks since the exhibit came down. This coming Saturday will be the first session since this lapse of time that I immerse myself back into the creative process. I will be creating some nude portraits of a couple from Chicago. I have some idea's, a loose plan of action, but at this point I don't have long term goals with this work. I hope that in time my creative muse will reveal itself to me and I will find meaning and significance in the work. To do that I first must play without being hindered by rules and expectations. Again, it will be about the process. I do believe that in time, "IT" will reveal itself again. It just needs time. Until then I will continue to create beautiful portraits. OLÉ!