Blog post as cutting tool

Active searching

There is a familiar point, in between periods of creative output, where things feel frozen, overwhelming, stuck. I’m not talking about creative block. I don’t believe in that kind, insofar as it means literally frozen from making or doing. This definition assumes that no work is being made at all. If you aren’t actually doing the process of making, going through the motions - active searching - then you don’t get what it means to be an artist, or maker. Or in the very least, you aren’t going to get anything out of whatever state you are in.

The familiar point I’m talking about is one of convergence. Ideas have fallen in on each other, crashing through the roof of desire. Questions have flooded the basement. One becomes stuck in a mental stasis of yes or no, right or left, up or down. No matter what mark I make with paint, or line I draw, it feels inconclusive. Old. Done before. Not what I want to be saying now. Though I take in a ton of imagery, I seem unable to respond in my own way. Fumbling. But I know this is the process. And the key is to move. Make. Do. Change something from before. Step outside.

Miscellaneous drawings from 2012.

Miscellaneous drawings from 2012.

Case in point.

I am feeling the push in myself to take on the task of actively developing the way I communicate with others online. This means more focused writing, sharing, showing what I am doing. Some of this feels affected or incongruous with myself. I’m not sure if that’s me, or the frayed remnants of a constructed artist narrative we’ve all grown up with. The one where you get discovered, chosen, hand selected, and don’t need to dirty yourself with promotion. It’s a myth. We all know this. It does happen to some. But that it will happen while I work away all to myself, without going out, showing, talking, trying to connect others to my work, in this digital age of instant image dissemination, is a myth. 

So I started writing this post in order to be active, to sort out, to hit publish. And that is what I’ll do. Hit publish and not worry about this one anymore. My studio is a dark, freezing garage, but my dissatisfaction with my current imagery won’t get fixed because I pull out the heater. So then what? Don’t pull out the heater, and do nothing?

I should get punched in the mouth for that shit.

Time to kill the darlings. It is said a samurai should make a decision in seven breaths. Get out the white paint and start blocking out sections, creating obstructive statements that force a response. It’s hard to trust a painting that looks easy. 

Less thinking, more breathing.