Discovery through painting

Fine art painting is a relatively new occupation of mine. Throughout my life I have been imaginative and very creative. Ideas came “falling from the blue sky“and when I was around the age of eight or ten perhaps, I had this conceptualization of how one can tune into a radio channel full of ideas. Later in life I fine-tuned this concept and learned more people before had come to a similar conclusion.

And so, the question also arises: who exactly is creative here and what does this mean?

Is creativity a consequence of time? I have been teaching this aspect in some recent workshops at universities/polytechnics. What if this “radio channel” is an aspect of time, in that you connect to a future where that idea has been applauded and celebrated. Thus, an emotional response from others towards your artwork for example.

Interesting research in the workings of ESP (Extra Sensory Perception) suggests that the general notion of time-space as a linear consequential does not always comply with the reality we live in. Instead, time seems to behave very differently. There is plenty of serious research done in this and, if you are on that path already you will find it. The point here is that at its core, a good idea evokes a positive response in the future.

Now, this good idea might as well be detrimental to some human beings, making it an “evil” idea. It just evokes positive responses in those who like those “evil” ideas. Thus, I am not claiming: good idea equals good morals.

One link I like to suggest and that is a book written by Grant Cameron. Grant Cameron is, to me, like a sponge which needs to absorb as much data and information as it possibly can. His book Inspired: The Paranormal World of Creativity essentially lists among others known and lesser known songs and how the creator credits the ideas to coming “out of the blue”. I don’t do justice to this book with the above, but read it yourself to make up your mind.

Now back to painting, when I paint I try to get into “the zone”. Which to me is nothing more or less a peace of mind and mental quietness. Often I play music rather loud so it is not about silence in that regard. I actively pursue getting answers from that radio channel. I also do this when lying in bed or any other place when needed, could be in a busy shopping street. No need to sit on a pillow and fold your legs in impossible ways and putting a devout smirk on your face.

Still working on Untitled

With each painting I do, I discover something about myself. The discoveries often go back and forth on certain issues. For example, should I paint more abstract or hyperrealistic. Should it be figurative or abstract? Is my painting more interesting if there are people in them, or not? Do I apply visual trickery or not? For more than thirty years I am active in creative professional life. I know much about the visual theories and experiments, about what is hot and not. But my goal remains to work on me as the authentic self. That is a lonely road for sure, and that is how it should be.

In this current painting I discovered something I – finally – like to share in this post. I understand how clouds look like. I see them every day and I look at them often. I know about the beautiful Turner paintings and those of the famous Dutch/Flemish masters. But those are their clouds, not mine. The real clouds are real because they are themselves. When captured with the highest super-duper-giga-pixel camera in the world, they remain a poor representation of the real cloud. I need to paint my cloud even though they do not like real clouds.

At first, I was not satisfied with the effects I got with my acrylic paint. I was aiming for cloud-fluff and instead got rock-brittleness

There is a lot I dislike, much to work on so to speak. And simultaneously, I need to sense if this way of representing the landscape is actually just who and how I am? Maybe this is my landscape and maybe I should not compare myself to the genius landscape painters before me. Or, is this simply a lazy escape route?

The interesting thing happened, though. Whilst laying in bed pondering over these thoughts, I started to accept my way of painting, as my way of painting. I do not have the patience nor the skill to paint the perfect cloud scape. But I can paint – my – cloudscape. The cloudscape that makes this painting authentically me. And then it happened, again: the landscape began to speak back to me.

“I need people walking uphill, into the darkness – and out of it again”. I felt this rush of happiness, like butterflies in my belly, when this thought arrived at my conscious mind. I knew that was a good thought and I imagined (!) how others in a future would look at this painting and feel the same way…

I can dream, can’t I? – George Carlin