Friday, May 25, 2012

Times they are a changin'

Six years ago, I was finishing up my final year of teaching. I was “Ms. Jarvi,” a public school art teacher (mostly high school) for thirteen years. I was always busy, some times were worse than others. I juggled a crazy full-time job with a part-time art career.

It was good for many reasons... including that I loved teaching teenagers. But, I left for two main ones. I wanted to pursue my own dreams, instead of putting others’ dreams ahead of mine like I did as a teacher. But most of all, I really longed for time to enjoy my life. Everything was always hectic and running behind, too much going on, etc.

Carlleena Person's work - recent.

Fast forward six years of self-employment, with lots of good and some bad times too. I have tried many things over this time period stemming from my many passions including painting, water, teaching, business and marketing. In the last eighteen months, especially, I’ve inserted myself into a few pretty new experiences for me and feel blessed to be doing some things I never dreamed of.

However, that also led to me juggling five part-time jobs. (There are actually more, but those are most active at this time.) Some of these are exciting. Another one - that used to be great - has become more difficult.

It’s a time of change, no question. Been building and growing, this change spreading like the root of weedy grass. I have been more frustrated than not. Good part is I say the word “no” more, and have even bowed out of some obligations I wanted to participate in, but no longer have time or energy for.
I have been tired and lethargic when not working at a frenetic pace. This brings me to last weekend.

I was attending this awesome Creative Capital “Internet for artists” weekend workshop at the McColl Center for Visual Art, sponsored by the Arts & Science Council. It was an amazing time with lots of other wonderful artists. Hard work with a full weekend schedule, but worth it because it was giving me tools much needed for next stage of my life.

Carlleena Person's work. 

On Sunday, May 20, I check facebook in the morning (as I shamefully most always do)... there was a post about a good friend who was in ICU with a blood clot. This friend didn’t make it through the day. Carlleena Person died from - what appears to be - complications from a major wreck a couple weeks before.

This incredibly talented, young artist was gone. Her generosity and philanthropic work... her inspiring and awesome art-making ceased. Tragedy beyond belief.

After resigning from one of my part time jobs, I can feel a burden lifting. Still pruning to do, but must celebrate small progress. The epiphany of this heart-wrenching week for me is quit working all the time, enjoy life and love my peeps. We can never do all that we want, so we [insert “I”] have to prioritize and limit or be taken over with “to do.”

(Must also add that, as a Christian, I am supposed to - and am recommitting to - give my life to God. Love His people, do the work, but quit worrying about the outcome.)

After six years of transitioning from art teacher and part-time artist to full-time artist and business woman, I have learned that at this stage of my career, I am stuck with not really having “days off” since much of my work is ever changing. The difference is that, now, I am taking time “off” within more of my days.

It’s okay for me to design my work schedule around down time. If today were my last, I would not want it to be spent frustrated and anxious because I did not - yet again - complete everything on my list.

Rest in peace, Carlleena Person. God bless your family and the incredible work you did in your life. You touched more souls than you may have realized!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Final painting

Here is my final version of latest painting from last post...

I did a few more small, but important, details on the woman and background area.

Waiting and looking at piece towards the end - I think - is more significant than just finishing it to get it done.  In this case, stepping away really allowed me to "see" what few details were needed.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Pastel painting in stages

Here's one of my recent pastel paintings in stages.

First I use a reddish pastel surface to work on.

 ... since the Cenote Azul photo has a bright green.

Beginnings are always rough.

In this one, I have added more layers of color...

This stage you can see my bold swipes across pastel surface with different parts of my hand...

More layered color, final details & hits of color... Is it finished??

Or should it be a square?