Friday, July 27, 2012


I read an interesting quote this morning that seemed to make sense and even encourage me  a little.  Here is what it said:

“The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who'll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you. If you're sitting around trying to dream up a great art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction. Inspiration is absolutely unnecessary and somehow deceptive. You feel like you need this great idea before you can get down to work, and I find that's almost never the case.”  - Chuck Close - painter.

 While I think it may be a little harsh (but I guess he can be because of how successful he is) I think this made sense to me mostly because I have not been one of those who has mounds and mounds of sketch pads, inspiration boards, or notebooks filled with "inspirational ideas".  I look through books, take pictures, and read a lot.  I hear of artists who get their inspiration from here or there, nature or architecture and on and on.  I try to do that but I always come up empty and that leaves me feeling less of an "artist" and more of a laborer. While I don't agree, nor would I judge that's for " amateurs", is is encouraging that a successful artist has another process. 

I like the idea of "the best ideas come out of the process" because that is how it works for me.  When I get out and work the ideas come.  I gather stones, look at components, place designs, re-arrange, re-do before something comes together fully.  

I think it's encouraging to know that we all have our processes..some get inspiration, some just do the work.  Its all art. 

1 comment:

  1. Great post! I am an occasional writer and composer of poems/haikus... I agree that most of the times its the actual process (and the inevitable refinements) that work rather than a bolt of inspiration :)