Sunday, December 6, 2009


This weekend, a couple of fellow artists and myself organized a life drawing seesion for ourselves. I have not drawn from a live model in years so it was wonderful and challenging. Capturing the human form is one of my favorites exercises in art. Though I have been quite intently drawing the human figure on a daily basis, I have been either working from photo references or from my imagination. Ain't nothing like the real thing baby!But I digress, as what I want to address is this week's blogs is the notion of allies.
I consider allies to be of vital importance to the success of any endeavor you pursue. Allies can be found in all kinds of places. Certainly, we hope, they are to be found among your exisitng friends and family. As we generally turn to such loved ones for love and support, they can be natural allies to reaching our goals. In addition to that is the sort of allies that show up when you commit to your path. Here a famous quote attributed to Goethe that I have always loved:
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.”
I love the idea of forces larger than ourselves having our back and being on our side. As part of the intent behind this post is not only to inspire with words such as Goethe as well as those that the Muses allow me, but also to stand witness and offer my life experiences as concrete proof of the veracity of what I assert to be true. Toward this end, I have been quite delighted to find numerous examples of providence moving with me. I have always found that some of my greatest allies have been books. A big part of what I am doing is self-study. I have gathered a tremendous faculty in my home that I am turning to guide me toward reaching my creative goals. Along the same lines, the advent of the internet makes it quite easy for experts to self-publish their own instructional videos in a variety of sources. I am using a number of those as well. Both these kinds of resources are well-suited to my personal requirements so that I can easily pick them up when I have the opportunity.
The internet has also provided numerous other sources of allies such as blogs like this one and social networking phenomena like facebook and twitter. For example,I am using facebook to let my peeps know when I publish this blog. In an earlier post, I mentioned my new online galieries,,and my print on demand service at Red Bubble, There are a couple of slide shows on my blog which are showing my prints and you can also click on those to go straightto my print service. This is the giving season and a print of my artwork would make a wonderful gift. Now back to our program. Setting up those sites has lead me to a whole new ocean of allies. On my Red Bubble site, there is a contant stream of comments of artists like myself offering mutual support to each other by looking at each others art, offering comments and indicating their favorites. It is a great experience to get kudos from others you respect and admire. I have also been joining/following all sort of blogs from fellow artists as sources of inspiration and mutual support. And I thank all of you reading this now as I count you among my allies.
To bring this blog full circle, the drawing I did last week was what I hope will be the inauguration of a community of artists that I will work with and meet with regularly. WHile I have historically preferred to create art by myself, the drawing I did last weekend has given me reason to do more to create a circle of artists in my area that I can physically meet with to draw and talk about art.
In the spirit of this weeks blog, I posted a sketch I did of a few of my favorite writers, Robert L. Stevenson, Herman Hesse and John Steinbeck.

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