Sunday, November 2, 2014

Dirty hands -- the painter's way

 Summer clouds Wallace Bridge (detail)
Acrylic on canvas
40 x 40 inches
Barbara Muir © 2014
It's hard to be a painter and a cleanomaniac.  Maybe
the two are diametrically opposed.  My hands are
definitely dirty tonight -- covered in paint, but as I painted
like a fiend all day today I could hear the common
myths about artists running through some quarter of
my mind, and I'd chuckle to myself thinking about them.

1.  We're disorganized
      Myth -- we need to be very organized just to
      paint one painting.  We need to plan the image,
      get the colours mixed, buy the canvas, do
      the underpainting -- and perhaps that is in different
      parts of the painting.

2.   We're emotionally stormy and deranged.
       Myth -- I'm not completely discounting this, but please!
       It's hard to concentrate for hours on end, dedicate ourselves
       to the task, keep the non-artist people in our lives
       happy if we're having hissy fits.  We can't.  Plus
       making art is supposed to be very, very good for
       the brain and the emotions. Calming.

3.  We are selfish.
      Myth -- Not true, I've talked to more than one artist
      in the past few days who was getting
      work ready to donate to a cause.  This is great
      for the cause, but for an artist dependent on selling
      that work to make a living not so lovely -- in Canada
      Statistics Canada says that on average a woman artist
      working full time makes $8,000 dollars, and on average
      a male artist working full time earns $9,000 per year. 
      Which means that donation is the height of generosity.

I'll stop at three.  The artists I know are happy, kind, have
well rounded lives, families, and frequently two or three
other jobs just to support their art careers.  Of course that's
an anecdotal sample, but I feel blessed to know each one.

Have an-enjoying-getting-your-hands-dirty-making-art day.


Unknown said...

beautiful beautiful beautiful!! what a stupendously lovely painting.

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Sally,

That makes me happy. It's not quite the whole thing -- I'm teasing it out while I complete one more big one. I had some help from a friend in
Kingston who talked about glazes. I am very grateful to her for helping me take down my greens.


Wendy Barrett said...

I agree with Sally - this is stupendously lovely Barbara!!
You seem to create magic with your sky-scapes and as a sky-scape aficionado - I know of what I speak!!

Kim Rempel said...

This makes a stunning painting cropped as is. Dramatic! I love it. ((hugs))

Marilyn Flanegan said...

Oh so lofty fabulous and at 40x40?! Show us more Barbara!!

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Wendy,

Thank you so much. You make me smile. I love your work too.

I'm a bit behind on responding because I have been painting like fury!


Barbara Muir said...

Thank you Kim,

Boy I love what you are doing. I'm glad you like it and hope you like the whole thing.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Marilyn,

Thank you and I hope you enjoy the whole thing. I saw the whole show today and felt very happy.


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!