Saturday, August 23, 2014

Art Blog: In the BLOOD

I have had the pleasure of meeting 500+ new students this week. It was a hot, crazy mess. However, I loved every minute of it. I was reminded that every human being needs to learn about creativity. Also, there are special individuals who are true, young artists. It is in their blood. For example, I met one little girl who cut her own bangs. I asked her about this. I asked her why she did this. Her response was "Because I wanted to." I asked if she got in trouble for doing this? She said "NO". That made me smile. She has a great parent or two. Some might see this as misbehavior. I see this as the work of an young artist trying to express themselves.

Despite the fact we need to teach everyone about creativity because no matter where your place in the world falls, you will need to be creative. There are always individuals who "get" this already. These young human beings already know the way. They are born creative. They express themselves through their dress and style. They might be moody even at a young age. They are different. Maybe this is why some artists feel like they have been outsiders their entire life.

It is very difficult to try to get close to so many students at one time. It is almost impossible to have a working relationship with that many students each week. This is why I focus on the art kids first. I can spot them from a mile away. They were born this way. Creativity runs through their veins. They are my young artists.

These are my people.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Art Blog: Blue Teeth

SOCIETY. We have a problem. Our values are so skewed. What are we thinking? If you watch TV, you will see people spending thousands of dollars on purses or being famous for doing nothing other than posing for selfies. What is going on here?

Even though I am a wise, intellectual woman, I too fall for the joke. I will admit. I have felt lesser due to all the stuff I see in media. When I see all the star studded opulence and grand lives parading in front of me, it is hard not to think "My life sucks!"

Then, there are moments of clarity. This week I was hired to teach full time again. I took two years off. This past year, I was an Instructional Substitute to help make financial art ends meet. During this time, I realized that I am an artist without a doubt. However it dawned on me, I am a natural teacher too.

I stopped at the store after work today. As I rounded the corner of the aisle, I saw a little girl looking at me. Our eyes met. Her eyes became as big as saucers. I smiled back and said "I know you!" I was her substitute teacher for a couple of days last year. She smiled the biggest smile. I guess she just ate a blue popsicle or something. Her teeth were all blue. We talked for a few minutes. I told her I couldn't be her sub anymore because I am a regular teacher now. We hugged and I wished her well. I told her to do a great job in 2nd grade.

When I left the store, I thought about all the little bits of Sheree I have left around the world. My art is floating around the globe. More importantly, I have decades of blue tooth children who have experienced my Sheree wisdom and weirdness. It will stay with them. This is why their faces light up when they see me. They remember the experience of being around me. Like morsels dropped on a path, I have left a trail.

This is what really matters.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Art Blog: Believe In Yourself

"I have wanted to take all of my art and put it in the garbage and burn it and say "F" this!, many, many times...ahh..then I don't. I just keep going because this is all I know. It just takes a couple of paintings and I am good for a year or two. Really.. You keep the hope up!"
Heather Wilcoxon

As artists, we have the power to drift off into our own imaginations. We live in our own heads. We believe those inner voices. We heed the good and bad of those listenings. Sometimes, we believe we are alone in our thoughts. We see the uniqueness of our own creativity, but we also think we are the only ones feeling the feelings. This is not true. I was reminded of the camaraderie of artist's experiences while watching a video about artist Heather Wilcoxon. As her gentle voice narrated the film, my mouth dropped in awe. Her words were my thoughts. I could say the exact same thing about my art life. She could have been describing me.

"I have been making art all of my life since I remember. Making my own world. I lived in my little world. I am still doing the same thing. It is what I do. It is who I am. I feel very privileged on one hand." Heather Wilcoxon

Especially in the past two years, I have realized more than ever, I live in my own little world. I have constructed walls around me. Yet, if I think back on all the years of my life, it has always been this way. I have lived my life in a home blown bubble. It was for safety and privacy. However, it has also been a way to protect my privilege of being special.

"It took me years to find my voice..." Heather Wilcoxon

This quote made me step back. As artists, we all develop our own vocabulary. The images we create and the type of strokes we make form together to make our personal alphabet. Some of the strife I have been feeling lately has to do with this. I want to deny my own vocabulary. I have wanted and tried to throw out the dictionary of my own language because it seems like nobody else understands what I am saying. This is not really true at all. It is one of those negative listenings I spoke of earlier. It is my black muse talking trash.

"Because I have been a fine artist and relied on sales, I have always had the up and down. I think when you get to be my age, it gets old. You think by the time you are 65 it is all going to be paying for itself. ha ha ha ha ha! SO NOT!" Heather Wilcoxon

These words too rang so true, she could have been shouting at me. Much of the drag I feel lately is because I am tired. I keep looking and seeking some little bump that will give me back my oomph! I have been on an art marathon. I am huffing and puffing right now. I have needed time to just stop and rest for a moment. I am not done with the race. I just need to stop for a sip of water and think about the words of wisdom that we all know to be true.

"I have to pick myself up because I have been there so many times. You have to believe in yourself. You've gotta know your work is good. I know my work is good. It will have its time." Heather Wilcoxon

Click pic to watch