Recommended reading 2012:
I’ve been reading Anthony Boswell’s blog ‘Et In Arcadia Ego’ – Beyond Painting a lot lately…
… he is very eloquent and manages to say the sort of thing I’m thinking, but in a way that is poetic, has a soft rhythm to it. It has a feeling of the internal about it, and feels a little confessional sometimes, very personal. I admire his courage and his writing style, and always come away from it feeling thoughtful, and a little inadequate.
Been reading Bo Jones’s blog “The Art of Teaching” too…
… Those of you that know me, or have followed my blog a while will know that I know Bo quite well, we did our MA together. I’m really glad he’s started writing, as his blog gives me a forum to think about and comment on my teaching, something I never really wanted to do on my own blog. His insight and questioning nature served me well during the course and since. He is used to me swearing at him, as the minute I think I have something cracked and start to feel complacent (see comment on laziness in previous post), he will ask a short and to the point question that throws me off balance and makes me think again. His own art work has occasional links to the topics I think about myself, but his outcomes are completely different, and these differences will often cast light on what I’m working on, and how I’m doing it. His blog widens out the questioning. Good stuff.
Ruth Geldard’s “Two Steps Backwards…”
…also has me hooked. Each post is peppered with great quotes that she’s obviously been collecting for a while, each appropriate to her subject matter. I have made at least two visits to that popular online bookseller since reading her blog. She is funny, and throws in references to her working style which, like mine, is often based around her kitchen table. It is reassuring to read that you can do it this way, anyway you like in fact. As she quotes:
The studio is less important than other things, like the burning desire to paint. If you don’t have this disease, you can’t catch it from a nice studio.” Warren Chiswell
My last recommendation, for now, is Marion Michell’s “Sleep-Drunk I Dance”
Her work is exquisite, and rarely, this shines through in the simply presented photographs. They provoke such an emotional response in me. She writes of them as real people, and I see their characters and their lives. The work and the writing about it is poignant. I hesitate to mention the other aspect of Marion’s blog, that of her illness, as she is often reluctant to do so herself. The illness makes her no less an artist, but it permeates her brain and her body so that its effect on the work is no doubt inevitable. But all of us are affected by our circumstances aren’t we? I could make a list of the parts of my life that influence my work, and these crop up in my blog now and then for all to see, and no doubt there are things I don’t see, that are blindingly obvious to others. These are the things that make our work our own. These are the good bits.
This whole blogging thing is great (despite discovering in the book “Information is Beautiful” that there is a 1: 35,000,000 chance I could die whilst doing it!).
Whether I’m reading other people’s or writing my own, it has provided a real focus for my thinking about my work. Even when it doesn’t seem like it – I do wander all over the place a bit!
So thanks everyone, keep writing through 2013!