|Andrew Vicari (photo via BWW Society)|
"The thing about being a painter," Andrew Vicari, who claims to being the most lavishly rewarded painter in the world, was saying, "is that every night you go to bed thinking the work you have done that day is fabulous. And then you wake up the next morning and look at your canvas and think it is worthless, a piece of junk, and you start again."That feeling repeats itself everyday. I am so practical though, that I always believe each evening I can will myself to believe in my work in the same fashion the next day. And although there are stints of time where I require no pacing, or extra trips to the cafe - another words, no screwing around, to get to work, I still come back and have the feeling Vicari admits. I'm sure any painter or other artist I've ever met would relate.
It is about how painting requires you to articulate honestly - which really means exactly what you're about, what ever is secretly repressed, what might be worrying you or even delighting you. That translates to being emotional, at least with paint. Emotions or states of mind change daily - hourly.
I was taught to be disciplined.You go to your studio to work even if you cannot. You paint until you can. That's not exactly emotional. But eventually emotion comes out of me. It's like I previously mentioned with Ginsberg's words.That semi "meditative" process creates a place you can be focused and closer to your thoughts.
I think the best when I am drawing. I've come to identify my drawing as simply a tool in my process - but usually not to any greater clarity of what I will paint, but great understanding as to how. I draw people. They are ordering coffee or hunched over bundling up children to leave. But my sketchbook reveals variances in line weight, shading, masses of tangled line - a mass of thought - and maybe some bit of clarity with a nose or ear. But inside, I feel sorted and able.
And honestly, I'm not sure I've exactly replicated that experience in the studio yet. Painting for 6 hours in a row usually brings me close. However, like Vicari says, it's coming back into the studio only to feel like the previous day was a waste, is how you ever get back to work to fix it.