December 20th, 2013.
Looking back at my calendar, I realize that, horror of horrors, I have not painted in over two months. How did this happen? It would be easy to say that I’ve just been too busy. That I’ve been working on the house, working on ways to keep money coming in to keep a roof over my head, like the dog-sitting business I started in April, and all that would be true. But it goes deeper than that. I think part of me is disillusioned. Disappointed. Fed up with the molasses-slow pace of my career as a painter. I got to focusing too much on (and being angry at) the money side of things (which is understandable as painting is my “J.O.B.” and my only income, besides the dog-sitting) and at the lack of sales of late. Hell, maybe I just needed a break. But I’d forgotten what a joy it is to paint, how wonderful it feels to complete a piece, to watch a series coming together. What a very necessary part of my existence it is. It’s time to get back at it, and with a more positive attitude. Yea, I’m still broke as fuck, but I can’t paint with a focus on money. I won’t, it rips all the joy out of it. I need to paint for me, and to Hell with whether it sells or not. (I will of course still be selling all my work, I’m just not going to obsess over it anymore.) The dog-sitting has been (almost) enough to cover my basic expenses, and that will have to do for now. It’s funny, I’ve been almost afraid to start painting again. But here I go. Pick up the brush, one stroke at a time…
It’s not painting, but…
I’ve started on a little side-project, one just for me. I’ve become kind of obsessed with origami lately, namely cranes. The legend is that if you make 1,000 cranes, your wish will be granted (or you’ll have good luck, or something along those lines.) I don’t believe in luck, or fate, or anything like that. I believe you make your own “luck” and circumstances. However, I do believe in focus. I believe that the disciplined act of folding the cranes, with the intention of the “wish” is a form of focused meditation. I have embarked on a “Crane Meditation” with a positive focus on my art career. And, I have this big stack of old Art Forum magazines, which happen to have square pages, perfect for origami. What better to create this art-intention origami from than images of art? I am now about 50 cranes in. I am enjoying the process, looking at the beautiful images of art I am folding, and am actually finding it inspiring. My goal is to fold 10 cranes a day for 100 days. Then I will create an installation of the cranes somewhere in the house, probably in my art studio. I will post pictures of my progress.
There have been some beautiful origami installations in the last few years. Here are a few of them:
This amazing installation of cranes for Japan earthquake relief, assembled by artist Vic Muniz
This pretty street art in San Fransisco
And the amazing work of my friend the artist Briana Martray shown here installed at the DIA airport. This installation of thousands of cranes was made from a novel she wrote and never submitted, and because of a computer crash is the only copy of the novel. http://www.briannamartray.com/
I like what this blogger had to say about it: http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs009/1101719606728/archive/1106450559286.html
So here goes my journey of 1,000 cranes, and the re-dedication of my (joyful) artistic career path. Happy Holidays all, and with this New Year my wish that 2014 is the best year yet, for all of us.
See my Available Artwork at www.vlasicstudio.com
“Cupcake”, oil on board, 12″ x 12″.
Currently on view at CHG Circa Gallery (Corey Helford Galleries sister space) in Los Angeles, CA in the “Instant Gratification” show.