Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Now or Never

How did I end up here...with a blog...calling myself an "artist?"  Here's my story.  I'd always considered myself a creative person but my creative outlets were jewelry making or interesting fashion choices or contrast flower combinations in the garden.  While I wished I was "artistic" it never occurred to me that I could draw or paint or create art by its more conventional definition.  One day about 6 or 7 years ago I was at a craft store with a coupon that entitled me to 50% off of one item.  My craft store purchases to date had been mostly arts and crafts for my two young children but on this day I decided to buy a how-to-paint kit for myself.  Not quite a paint by numbers, but close to it.  Using 5 acrylic colors and carefully detailed instructions I painted an autumnal scene of a water mill with rushing creek surrounded by trees covered in orange foliage.  Despite the kitschy subject matter I was shocked and delighted by how my first attempt at painting looked.  I LOVED IT.  And I was hooked.

Over the next several years I enjoyed painting local landscapes (mostly from photographs I took...with two small kids there was no way I was going to sit at the beach painting for hours!)  I admit I copied a lot of local artists work as well...and considered this not plagiarism but self-teaching.  Although I was proud of my paintings I always longed to develop a style of my own.  There are so many landscape artists out there, 99% of whom are vastly more talented than I am!  I branched out and enjoyed painting many pieces of whimsical flora and fauna art for children's rooms which I gave as gifts to family and friends.  Still...I was always searching for something different. 

About 3 years ago I started experimenting with adaptations of Hungarian folk art.  My parents came to the US from Hungary in the 1960's and I grew up surrounded by Hungarian embroidery and felt work.  I love interpreting the Hungarian floral designs with many media and find great personal satisfaction celebrating my heritage in this way.

These days it's often a struggle to find the time to devote to my art.  With two growing children, a job, a busy husband and a few demanding pets it's not easy to carve out time to be creative.  I'm hoping this blog will help by giving me one more outlet to experiment and learn.  This is my continuing journey on the road to being able to call myself an artist without flinching.

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