Sunday, April 29, 2012

Shipping to Show

First stop Paris
Acrylic on canvas
30 x 30 inches
Barbara Muir © 2012
While I was painting this painting I was listening to
Seth Godin videos. One of the talks I enjoyed was
about shipping.  Lizard brain according to Godin stops
us from shipping.  And when you're showing in
New York City as I am at the Amsterdam Whitney
Gallery (the opening reception is May 10), you have
to ship to show.  So this painting had to be ready to
go on Saturday.  And it was.

Godin calls the negative chat we do "thrashing" and
says that lizard brain encourages us to thrash at the end
of a project, and then we miss our deadlines.  We don't ship.
Shipping of course is also a metaphor for getting our
work out to the public, for being actively involved in
moving our art, or writing, or opinions into the world
to do what we were meant to do.  But doing so involves risk,
and risk makes us uncomfortable, so we don't take
risks.  We manufacture excuses instead of just doing
it.  Believe me I have worked really hard at fighting the
urge to let the lizard win.  Nothing against lizards.

So here she is.  I have had dreams of going to the shipper,
taking the work out of the box and doing more.  (Note
to self -- you could always do more.  On the next painting!)
Godin also says that you do have enough time, but you have
to decide.  I was taught at art school by a wonderful
artist who would take his work down in museums, take
watercolours out of the glass and "fix" things.  That's
a disease.  I had to let her go, and looking at her tonight
I feel happy that I did.

Have a getting-it-out-there day.


Liza Hirst said...

Barbara, she's wonderful!! I love your composition, the girl's expression, the brushwork - it's absolutely fit for a show in New York, for YOUR show in New York!
And I wish you all the success you derserve and that I could attend the vernissage. I am sorry for being quite absent from the www these days, but I always enjoy receiving your newsletter even if I don't respond.
Thanks also for the lizard "thing", something I have to keep in mind, because I know that very well.
All the best, Liza

cohen labelle said...

Barbara, these last two portraits are magnificent as are all your portraits!!!!
You are definitely a hero in my eyes for being able to let go and deliver on time! Whew - the thought of all that pressure would make me faint - I don't know how you manage it as well as being incredibly talented, of course!
Apparently the urge to hold on to a painting even after completion was irresistible to Degas - for one, who was famous or notorious for borrowing back sold works to fix or add more finishing touches to them.
Great job!!!!
Love, Marcia

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Liza,

Thanks so much I'm glad you like it. I wish you could be at the vernissage too. What a hoot that would be. Champagne and laughter and huge joy. We will meet someday. I know we will.

Glad you like the lizard info. Fighting it full time here -- especially hard when I have a great novel.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Marcia,

And you are my hero for your amazing drawings. How you do it, you know how. You do it because you have to, and so you do. Gotta get 'er done, as Steven says. Feels good after.

Love (wow upper case),


Linny D. Vine said...

She's fabulous, Barbara! Love the towering Eiffel Tower, too!

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Linny,

Thanks so much. Glad you like her. I put her where she'd like to be. She says I painted her before and she got to go there, so she thinks I've got the power. Love that song.

Love your work too.

It makes me feel delighted with the world.

XO Barbara

Portrait Artist

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!