Sunday, March 10, 2013

An Artist Statement

I'm working on it.

What's interesting to me is that while trying to summarize what I do (because other than pastels and drawing, I would not really see a theme in my work), I discovered that I am leaning towards a focus on captured moments. The work of the impressionists is greatly inspiring to me. I really cannot imagine how they managed to capture what they did without photographs. Well, I've recently learned that Degas did use some photographic reference, but it was very limited. I also recently learned that while he did field sketches, his finished works were all done in the studio.

I love the play of sunlight across things... across the curve of a body, across the shape of a building. Or maybe it's the shadows that grab my attention. In any case, I (at least currently) like scenes that are brightly lit and have distinctive shadows and values.

But almost everything I've done that I really like so far, has had some sort of historic/historical connection. My husband working on geneology. The old jail building in town. The swamp (in an area where wetlands abound, but nationwide, they are endangered), my mother's hands while she knits. I have reference photos for things like the hands of a weaver while warping a loom and pictures from the blacksmithing shop. I love old farm buildings and hope to spend some time this Spring and Summer doing some plein air work featuring one or more of them.

And, while I'm a little hesitant to declare victory just yet, the doctor has finally discovered what may be a basis for my fatigue, bouts of lightheadedness and intolerance for heat and much of my weight problem. Seems I have something called atrial fibrillation. Its cause is genetic but can result in stroke. So, the doctor has put my on a beta blocker with the idea of stopping the palpitations. Since Wednesday when I started them, I've lost a lot of water puffiness, I feel more focused, the lightheadedness has stopped and my fingernails are growing like weeds. With the drop in water retention, I've noticed my joints do not hurt so much. But when I run out of steam (around 7 p.m.), I really am done for the night. I'm hoping this is a side effect that continues; but I've also noticed my appetite has returned to "normal" and I am not driven to eat by the grinding fatigue. I have distinct hunger pangs now and find no desire to eat unless they are there. And when I do eat, I can tell immediately when I'm satisfied and have no problems stopping. This is all contrary to what the literature says this stuff does; but I'm not complaining.

So, it's not specifically art related but does affect my quality of life (and possibly my longevity), so for me, it is.

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