Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Just let me paint it out
Dear readers, in a time of chaos and economic stress for many, I felt I needed to write this, for myself. While I always look at things positively, I also felt that it is wrong to not, on occasion, let you in a bit deeper. For while I often share my sadness with you, and joys, it is anger that is unrepresented sometimes on this blog. And I think there is a lot of anger out there.Hermann Hesse explained it best, that we artists and humans are not masters of our universe, we are the birds in a storm. "Everything in you is gold as well as mud", but sometimes we are masters at hiding the mud.
I painted this yesterday. Yes, it's a donkey, and a woman holding a pie. They sit together, in the dark, with remnants of sun from the past - or are they sun specks growing in the future. Life is what you make it. Glass half full, or half empty.
Martyn confessed he's quit listening to the car radio because the news infuriates him. I quit listening on a daily basis last year for the same reason. He said he found himself muttering and yelling at the radio. Now that he quit listening, he says he mutters more at the fences and shovels and bricks and ladders on his job sites [he's a landscaper].
Anger. It's everywhere. Where do you put it? In today's world, you can disguise your anger in cynicism and post it on Facebook, Twitter, or Blogger. One button push on iphone could blast your anger all over the universe. We're all just so connected....and now all that anger is part of the connection.
We talked last night about a simple reality. People get angry, and they can hold it in, or let it out in unproductive ways. Martyn said the suicide rate is way up. I think people are angry at their bosses, angry at Obama, angry at Cheney and Bush, angry at the ocean for wiping out Haiti, angry at mothers and fathers and neighbors. They're angry their fat and angry they're not rich enough or young enough, or old enough, or too old. They can't have an iphone NOW, and they get angry. They can't get to work fast enough, and they get angry. Angry people in tin cans full of gas....a lethal combination.
And I get angry too. I present things on this blog in tones of composure, because I choose too. I always feel grateful there was no internet/blogger when I was in my 20's-40's...I had less discipline for spilling my guts. I see so many people building entire careers and book deals on dreadful blogs and for me anyway, boring unmeaningful chatter. Um...I guess that can make me angry too. I bet there's a bunch of people that read my blog and for one reason or another, they get angry [like the woman that told me I was a scam artist for asking for cat food donations to help feed the then 25 ferels in our barn - she felt naming cats things like "Mister" Plum was manipulative.]
What do I get angry about? Junk cars in yards, the puppy won't come, I missed garbage day - again, my waistline is thickening and I have no control over it, my bank account is smaller than my to do list, total strangers asking if I'd lower the price on a $5 bundle of lavender that cost me and my back $25 to produce. Everyone wants a hand out, but I have my hand out too.
So yesterday, I admit, I was really depressed. I was down. I cried. I lost my temper with the puppy. That's pathetic. So I walked, and I talked to all the powerful sources I knew were right there in me and around me. And then I came back and said to myself, just paint what you want today, not what you 'should' to add to a portfolio that no one seems to have any use for in today's market.
And I painted this. It's just a little prayer for myself, all these paintings are. I'm no rock star illustrator, and probably never will be- but I put food on my table from my land. I do it without an iphone, or even an app. And I have a donkey, make that three donkeys. Yes, I have that. It's all mine. It makes me happy, not angry, and that's why I keep painting it over and over again.