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Who works here anyway

I’ve heard it said it is hard to work when you have an exhibition up. I’m using that as an excuse to spend time gardening, playing, watching movies, having fun. My neighbors came by and generously put my dock into the lake Saturday morning.  I started cutting down the bushes that obscured the view from the house. I bought some more rhododendrons from a friend who grows them from seed. My vegetable garden is already producing food for my plate and growing daily. I’m preparing some cold frames to begin a four-season garden, so I can have fresh picked veggies when there is snow on the ground.  It all feels like play and I like it.

I’m also thinking a lot about the empty canvases I am about to work on when I get back into my studio, probably tomorrow. I’ve recently been looking at some reproductions of artists whose paintings I admire. As a result, I think I should be painting like they do, taking their ideas, using them–i.e., plagiarizing. Granted, as they say, there is nothing new under the sun. Yet, it seems, when I try to paint “like” someone else, it becomes weak in my hands. Doesn’t have the strength I admire in their work. Obviously, it is because it is not mine. So it is really not the “new” but the “honest” that makes a work “true”.


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