Category Archives: e-book

I had a feeling

I had a feeling

…Or, art is an experience of resonating

What exactly is a feeling?

Isn’t it funny that we all seem to know what feelings are, but can you really pinpoint one? Like a color, there is no particular reason to believe two people are having the same experience named by a certain term.

Yet, for all that ownership of our private emotions, some of them can sure be scary. Why, if no one else is inside our head to insist that we feel a certain way, can’t we just change it?

You can’t change a feeling directly, because you can’t unfeel. But you can transmute it by feeling it openly, with more curiosity than judgment, giving it the time it needs in the light of day.

Some people are so good at this. I only learned the skill a few months ago by trial of fire. Luckily I had just bought a big, fat notebook to start doing Morning Pages.

Morning Pages

You have probably heard of Morning Pages, a technique by the trailblazer of creative process, Julia Cameron in her famous book, The Artist’s Way, A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity.

Basically, you write 3 pages every morning. No matter what. No matter what about.

Amazing things happen inside of you.

I found that out for myself, having had nothing better to write about than this humongous, uncontrollable shame that had come up in response to a sharp criticism I received. I wrote and wrote, and then collapsed into bed. (Okay, I didn’t wait for morning to do my Pages.)

I woke up at dawn and jumped out of bed, feeling like the sun was rising in my aura with birds singing in my head and a million bucks in my pocket.

Since then, I’ve become quite practiced at diving right into my feelings. It’s the first thing I do when they come up, which is so weird and wonderful compared to my previous procedure of shoving them into a burlap sack and praying they don’t make a peep when the inspector comes around.

Art is a experience of resonating

Art, like Morning Pages, can be a transmuting process. Luckily. More on that in a future post.

I tell my students that what you feel goes into your painting and can be felt by the viewer. So, be easy. Allow the paint to speak, rather than forcing it.

I think that’s why we love the work of a master. It feels so easy — and masterful! We resonate to these exquisite feelings!

Looking at an artwork is an experience of resonating.

“How does an artwork make you feel as you take the trip through it with your eyes?” 

This simple question, from my free ebook, How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life, speaks volumes about why people buy art.

If you’re an abstract painter and you wonder why one of your paintings sold and another didn’t, look no further for the answer.

So, about my ebook

Have you read it yet? Perhaps it, like abstract art, is deceptively easy. There’s a lot packed into its simple language.

Let me know what you think. And, if you incorporate the ideas into your artmaking I’d love to hear your stories.

My new ebook: How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life

How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life

A Manifesto of freedom and confidence for the creative soul

There must be something about Memorial Day that inspires great action in me, because it seems each year I do something bold and “out there,” for me.

This year it’s putting my baby into your hands. As mentioned in yesterday’s email, I’ve been working on my ebook all (this long Pennsylvania) winter, much to the chagrin of my dear editor.

Putting abstract ideas (couldn’t resist) into writing — forming the formless process of abstraction into words and sequences — was a drawn-out joy and obsession for me. It was one of those things, like a painting, that I had to sit with between iterations and let it steep.

I wanted to allow myself time to sink into the question: Was it true? Was each part honest and clear and clean?

It came out (I would say) breezy-to-read but hell-yeah. Like, “Why didn’t someone tell me this before?”

I believe I have taken a big step toward what I set out to do in my career: to further the dialog of abstraction. And hopefully to help abstract artists become better able to do what they are trying to do in their art.

So, get your free copy and take a look.

How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life, A Manifesto of freedom and confidence for the creative soul

Let me know what you think. Really!

Bringing your art to life

What does your art mean to you?

When the subject of making art comes up in conversation, I notice three types of responses:
1. “I couldn’t do it to save my life.”
2. “I love painting; it helps me relax.”
3. “I am an artist.”

While person #3 may go on to tell me about their process or work, their eyes belie the ease of their conversation, conveying a range of emotions that says, without words:

There is no way you will ever know what I feel about my art, what it has meant to me in my life, what I go through to make it meaningful, what it means to me now.

Artmaking, for an artist, is an ultimately personal experience and exploration. No one celebrates the day they transition from person #2 to person #3. We aren’t really aware of what just happened. It’s a private sea change: from doing your art for a reason, to doing your art for You.

I’m sure you know what I mean.

My ebook

I’m excited to tell you that, after a long winter’s imagining and work, I’ve written an ebook to help person #2 transition to person #3, and to help person #3 gain mastery in abstract painting.

Free to you, my ebook is called How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life, A Manifesto of freedom and confidence for the creative soul. (33 pages)

It will help you to see abstract painting in a new way, so that you have a way to move forward to make your paintings better.

My new ebook: How to bring your abstract art to life

After a long winter’s work, I have finished writing an ebook that I think will help many artists to get their bearings in abstract painting.

It’s called How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life, A Manifesto of freedom and confidence for the creative soul.

ebook: How to Bring Your Abstract Art to Life

Here’s how I describe it: “In its 33 eye-opening pages, you will learn abstract painting in a new way.” It won’t derail you from your current way of painting. Instead, it will change the way you see your paintings, so that you have a way to move forward to make them better.

The book is free. Sign up for it on my new website. (More about my new site in the next blog post.)

Enjoy! And, please let me know what the ebook does for you.