Jostling Joy and Selective Perception

I’ve joined an art mentoring group, something I’ve wanted to do for a while . Each meeting involves lively discussion, critique of previous effort and homework.

The yellow/orange canvas is the “start” of my homework. In my mind’s eye I can see every layer to come. I’ve event written them out step by step. The “joy” is seeing if my vision comes to fruition.

This month I’m asked to purposefully consider what I like about the work of other artists – what draws me in, is intrinsically pleasing. At the same time I’ve been asked to thoughtfully look at my “style”…what I like about the way I paint, what colors I come back to, brushstrokes and symbols/patterns that repeat.

As I work toward completion of my painting homework, I’ve had the experience of jostling with joy, while swimming in the deep end of selective perception.

Jostling is a great word. It means to push, elbow or rub against roughly, typically in a crowd. My screenshots and notes regarding artwork I like is indeed a crowd. There is so much I find pleasing in other’s work. So many historical and contemporary artists I admire. I feel as if I am indeed pushing and elbowing my way through a large crowd of comparison – only to push my way straight into the joy of discovering colors and styles that combine, at least in my early consideration, into a new level of creating.

The selective perception, as it relates to my personal artistic efforts, will always be fighting against my perceived absolute inferiority compared against the absolutely superiority of others. I swim in the deep end of that pool daily. The only floatation device I’m finding to be reliable is the jostling joy of creating.


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