3 reasons to love art…

3 reasons to love art…

What only 3?  I doubt it, but for now here are my top three…

1 – Potential.  No matter how much I read, watch, see, or listen to there’s still more out there for me to read, watch, see, and listen to.  I love learning about art and being expressive. Of discovering different ways to create.  And it seems the more I find out, the more paths I find to explore. I love the feeling that my potential as an artist is always being stretched. Challenged.  And that I haven’t learnt all there is to learn. It keeps me interested in life, and it still, after all these years, fires my passion.

2 – The joy of looking.  Oh! When I see someone’s work that I connect with – the feeling! It’s like pins and needles. Like I’ve been plugged in and have had a powerful blast of something I want more of. Cy Twombly at Liverpool Tate. Callum Innes when I was a student. Too many artists online to mention individually but who are generous enough to share their work. I thank you all.

3 –  Development. Before I embarked on my artistic journey, I imagined there was ‘a way’ to ‘it’ and all I had to do was go and learn ‘it’. I’ve since found out that ‘it’ is never still. You might do ‘it’ this way one year but ‘it’ moves on to something a bit different next year. This can be deliberate or not but it rarely stays the same forever. And it just keeps on delivering surprises. Now, of course, we have technology developing alongside us to enable more experimenting and exploring. As I said – potential. It’s always being stretched.

So, what are your top 3? Are they the same or have you found other reasons to love it? Feel free to post, I’m sure my other reader would like to know too.



Project tea-pot 3

This is what my desk contains at the moment…

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…and there’ll be more. The ideas are flowing. Obviously it’s all unfinished and it could be that not everything makes the finale. But all this work fodder from one  flash of inspiration and a tea-pot! Celebrations, sharing, heritage, genetics, personal and social history, the list is endless.

So, if you want to produce art and don’t know where to start, I’d suggest you go and find a ‘tea-pot’ of your own and see where it leads you. And if you want to join my Facebook art group to post the results go to http://www.Facebook.com/Art Group – Lynne Shaw. You should find us there and you’ll be very welcome. It’s open to all.

Happy painting.

Project tea-pot- first one finished

Hi.  You may have noticed I’ve been away for a while – no? Oh, a stab to my heart!!!

Anyway, during my absence, project tea-pot hasn’t gone away. The thoughts, however, are resonating.  Digging deeper and stirring longer.  Memories associated with tea pots are gathering momentum – celebrations, get togethers, sharing, history, genetics…..biscuits! you see where I’m going?

For now though, rightly or wrongly, good or bad, here’s the first finished image. I’ve got it out of my head, onto the paper, and it is what it is. Will the Tate galleries be fighting over which one is to exhibit such a fine piece? I think we all know the answer to that, but it was fun. It got me started. It got my thoughts and feelings out on paper and satisfied my curiosity. It even got me trying my hand at ‘movie’ making!!! I might fill you in on that bit if I ever get it finished. All I can say is that I am REALLY enjoying the process! Who knows a new career may be on the horizon. Oh, dear. Will my daydreaming never stop???…

…here it is.

Project tea pot 17 - Final
Project tea pot 17 – Final

My mind on paper – thoughts on creating new work…

I’ve always found creativity has stages that can throw you into chaos or calm. Each stage can be positive or negative depending on the circumstances or your point of view. For instance…you have a positive run of exhibtions, events and sales. This has usually been supported by months of scurrying around gathering materials, producing art, framing, costing, finding suppliers – you get the gist. It’s a positive stage filled with ambition and direction. Or it’s a negative stage filled with decisions and speed and escaping time. It depends how it feels and what else you may have going on in your life at the time, but it’s filled with energy and ideas.

Then comes the slump. It’s over. The ideas have been tried and tested. The work is complete and out there.  Now the energy bubble has burst. The chocolate has melted. The suitcase is empty. Call it what you will but the get up and go and got up and gone. You’ll never have another good idea ever again. Obviously, this is bad. This is negative. This is not a good place to be. Or it’s a great place to be. You’ve had a run of wonderful ideas and produced finished pieces of artwork. You’ve added more examples in your portfolio and have quality work for sale. The suitcase is empty and ready to be filled again. And you will do it again. You can do it again.

The slump is a necessary evil, I feel. Yes, it can be a bit of a scary head-place to be. And yes, a little bit of panic can creep in from the shoes upwards if we’re not careful. But without it we’d be in ‘create’ mode all the time. That’s not good! Imagine – always at it full throttle! At anything full throttle all the time isn’t good. We need ‘scary slump-time’. We need to allow ourselves time to rest and re-charge. It isn’t being lazy or un-productive, it’s part of what we do. It’s part of the process. We need to go away and not do it for a while. Potter. Let things percolate.

Suddenly, when we’re not thinking about it, little ideas start to generate. Things we’ve taken an interest in or have simply noticed in passing, start to resonate and grow so thoughts get mingled with feelings. Considerations and curiosity increase and we start to take photos, tinker with pencils, paint, glue paper – whatever. We have no idea where we’re going we just follow it along. As we go, stronger ideas develop and tally-ho! We’re off again. An idea.

So, after my recent ‘busy period’ and my ‘slump’ and my ‘percolating’, I now find ideas creeping in my head. Try as I might I can’t dismiss them so there has to be a reason. I’m curious, so I’ll follow the thoughts and see where they take me.  Brave I know! I may face failure or ridicule. It may all turn out to be nothing and I’m left red faced trying to explain what went wrong. My ‘theme’ may seem trivial – even comical, you could laugh at me! Alternatively, you may identify with my subject. It may remind you of things and make you re-call stories of your own? Chaos/calm – positive/negative – see what I mean?

My theme?  I hear you ask – Tea-pots. Yes I know, it’s odd.  It surprised me too but I can’t stop thinking about them. Their significance, their design, their presence. They’re fascinating me and I just want to draw them. Where I’m going I don’t quite know. How the finished articles will look, I have no idea. I’m on a mission and I’ll follow it until it bores me or I feel I’ve exhausted it.

Watch this space?…

My mind on paper – thoughts on creating abstract art

I’ve been doing a lot of abstract work lately as I find the process of letting my thoughts and feelings randomly unfold on the paper really liberating. I’m always amazed at where the marks come from and how they end up making sense.

I say ‘end up’ because there’s always that dodgy bit in the middle that scares the pants off me. I find myself thinking that all that work, all that time and all that money on materials is sadly heading straight for the bin.  Somehow though, it doesn’t (not always anyway). Somehow, something happens and I push through that stage to reach an end point. That in itself is something of a mystery.  How do I know I’ve ‘got there’ if I didn’t know where I was going? How do I know it’s finished if I didn’t know what my intention was in the first place? But there it is, right in front of me and I know I don’t want to do anything else to it. Strangely, I do know it’s finished. I know I’m satisfied with what I’ve done and to my critic’s surprise I even know when it’s the wrong way up!

When I finally get round to mounting it and it turns from a fragment of my imagination into a product, I’m suddenly justified. Contrary to popular belief, I do have a proper job! I am capable and I’m not just an ‘arty, farty type’. Hoorah!

Here’s an example of one finished piece that magically came together and vindicated my existence.


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