Alaskan Artist - Elise Tomlinson
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09/23/2006: "Lady in Waiting"

Nothing inspires me like watching another artist in the studio. I think what impressed me the most about Andy Warhol was his incredible work ethic. He worked non-stop. His advice to other artists was to constantly make art and not worry about if itís any good or not, to let the critics decide.

My creative cycle is somewhat predictable and I can tell that Iím on the cusp of that momentÖthe moment just before the ideas and the images come. Itís exciting and a little scary, like a ball of fire in the pit of the stomach; like waiting for a loverís phone call. I donít feel like eating or sleeping; I canít stay focused; Iím just pacing about waiting for it. °Darmelo!

I donít know about other artists but I canít just sit down and start working. I mean, I guess I can do isolated pieces that way. I can tell myself ďyou need to work todayĒ and I can start a painting. But what Iím waiting for is the magic. I can think and read and intellectualize, but the joo joo comes from a place I can't tap into at will.

Iím also a little worried that a major creative spurt on the heels of my recent social reemergence could cause me to back-slide into isolation before my healthy new habits have a chance to take hold; I guess thatís a risk Iím willing to take though.

ĒHappy are the painters, for they shall not be lonely. Light and colour, peace and hope, will keep them company to the end of the day." -- Winston Churchill.

Replies: 7 Comments

on Saturday, September 23rd, Jonathan said

I've been reading your blog for awhile now and I have seen your pattern of not working for awhile and then being very very productive.

I remember you always worry that you will not have more ideas but then you do and the paintings are better than before so be patient.

As for being less social, I know you complain about not being a very balanced person that is part of the artistic temperament but you also know now that you have the power to behave differently so maybe this time get out of the studio a little more often.

wow, just lurking all this time an now a book and preachy too. sorry, back to the shadows for me.

on Saturday, September 23rd, Judy Vars said

I understand the feeling of wondering am I a recluse do my friends want me...Sometimes art can feel like a lonely profession. Andy Warhol had an entourage of people around him all the time he was incredably social besides being a prolific creater of art. He is/was very inspirational. I also like this quote "Every morning I awake with an exquisite joy the joy of being me" Salavodore Dali
Glad you're still here :cool:

on Saturday, September 23rd, Elise said

Hi Jonathan, thanks for de-lurking! and you don't sound preachy, it's good advice...I'm just not sure I can follow it.

And hi Judy,
Andy Warhol did have an entourage, I've just never been able to paint around other people so...that's not an option.

They have started weekly life drawing sessions here in Juneau and I'm going to start attending when possible. I think it will be good for me to be around other artists.

on Sunday, September 24th, Jake V said

Hi Elise, I'm an artist as well, ceramics, but I understand what you're saying. I think you're putting too much pressure on yourself, you can't force inspiration and sometimes just making "art" everyday helps to bring on those big ideas you're waiting for.

Just a thought. I have gone through similar dry spells but if I always waited for the muses to visit before getting to work I'd never get anywhere.
good luck!

on Sunday, September 24th, Elise said

Hey Jake, good advice. I am going to start...really really soon, I mean it.

very soon.

on Sunday, September 24th, Kasia said

I am not a paint but I Have this thing when I am writing sometimes. It just comes and goes. You can't controll it. There are days, weeks and months even when I don't feel it. I miss it but can't do anything to have it back. all I have to do is wait. You are right. This is magic.
I understand that it must be hard for you to find a balance between painting and normal life when "the thing" comes finally.

on Monday, September 25th, Elise said

morning Kasia! I'm sure it's the same for writing, creating music, anything where you have to pull from somewhere outside yourself.

Anyway, I hope you keep writing. Perhaps you'll want to do NaNoWriMo with me in November? National Novel Writing Month...I didn't finish last year but I'm feeling lucky!