I subscribe to and follow few things, but I receive a newsletter from David Limrite, a graphic artist. I’m not sure I would even like his art hanging in my space, but he has a consistent style. It’s obvious he’s looking for something, and his newsletters are positive without a saccharin component. I thought his latest was a good take on “the muse”, something universal to creative. Writers should have no difficulty reading this cross curriculum. The bolding is mine.
I love when surprises show up in my work. You know, when something appears in a painting you are currently working on that you didn’t expect.
It could be an unusual texture, a completely different color that you don’t normally use, or an unplanned juxtaposition of elements that end up working in a quirky way.
I love when this happens. And I welcome it.
However, these surprises don’t just happen by themselves. They only happen when I show up in front of my easel and work. Surprises only happen when I am trying stuff, experimenting and taking risks.
In order for surprises to present themselves, I have to set up situations that invite them in. I have to be applying paint to canvas. I have to be making marks with charcoal on paper. I have to be gluing collage on a wood panel.
I also have to be looking for and be open to surprises showing up. And welcoming. And willing for them to make a surprise appearance.
I must be present during the creation of my pictures. I have to be watching what is happening on the surface of my painting while I am working on it. I have to pay attention.
Show up, make your art, pay attention, and allow yourself to be surprised.