Should my art mean something?

Despite being lazy and having a late and slow start to the day, once I actually got out of bed (something that’s even harder since we brought a wonderful tempur mattress) I spent the day in my studio painting. Finishing paintings:

Prepping canvases ready for my next dancer and city at nightscape.

I even got round to doing a little more on a painting of the college building where I do the day job. It’s inspired by a photograph by another creative that’s also works at the college and whilst dreaming of an art life.

In fact his outdoor themes of city and countryside photography is what inspired me to do my first piece that explores city night lights. Previously I have steered clear of buildings and manmade forms,

preferring the beauty of mother nature.

But lately I am finding myself stepping more and more outside of my painting comfort zone. Doing things completely differently.

Both in subject and style, and I am loving where it is taking me. Especially the enjoyment of experimenting without the self pressure to produce a good end piece.

I feel like I am at a very strange cross roads at the moment, totally unable to pick a route. As I am so interested in what is down each road and the new lesson I am finding there. So for the time being I am going to continue exploring until something draws me further in one direction. Even though it is probably quite the opposite of what I probably should be doing, as I am building my website and want to get back in the habit of selling my paintings again.

I listen to an array of podcasts and follow umpteen art marketing blogs who all speak about the importance of finding your style, your niche, your consistency, so you online presence can flow and be compatible. But I have yet come accross anyone talking about the space before, before your style evolved, before you find your signature, before you know what you want your art to show the world. When you don’t know exactly what or why, but you know you just have to paint. Like me right now.

As I write this I am acutely aware of another stroke surviving painter, who following his stroke couldn’t stop painting. Maybe my art is simply part of my brain injury, it ws definitely born as a result of it. Maybe there isn’t need for any other explanation. although I am not sure that would fit into any modern art world I know of.

I am sure for many artists the journey of understanding their art, their uniqueness, their style and subjects starts at college. Exploring the past greats and art history, experimenting with mediums with guidance of professors and professional mentors and surrounded by creative’s. All learning to question, reflect and add meaning to their work . So without this it is easy to get caught up in imposter syndrome.

But like me there must be so many self taught artists who start this journey at the same time as building the first foundations of an art career. Not knowing much more than simply “I have to paint, sculpt or make” or should all artist have a message a meaning or lesson to share with the world?

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