To live and enjoy every day to its fullest, use my gifts to help others, I travel to wherever passion finds me.

What Will She Paint?

So many friends I met here...!

Friday, August 06, 2010


Many times I have thought about teaching art. A major drawback is that when one teaches at a school, or does workshops there is usually not much time or energy left to develop your own style or approach to painting. In the beginning I did go the route of art exhibits and entering juried exhibitions (where a jury determines the prizes), but I had to travel too much, and since I received all the art prizes I wanted in my teens, it did not appeal to me to invest my time in these venues.
Others do art related jobs, like working in a gallery. This week I talked with an artist who does that and showed me her last painting of a vase with sunflowers -done very well and in an attractive style. The last time she had painted was  a year ago!

 See how close the people sit? It was packed at this conference!

Since it took me twenty years to get back to art, I value my time immensely and want to redeem it as much as possible. I know I have the luxury to think this way, because I don't have to earn my living with art. Although now hubby is getting retiring age, things become a little different :). 
Above, I'm talking to an artist in a similar position, only she finally in her late forties took the jump to go to art classes. She does abstract art.
It seems a common phenomena that people who were in their beginning of life interested in art, come back in their fifties or later, when life if not so focused anymore on success, climbing the corporate ladder, or earning a living.

 taken before the speaker starts.
This conference was last week, and medium size, about 800 attendants, and the speaker  known for the subjects of Dreams and visions.

My (wise in art) son said to me once, "You need a platform. You have valuable things to say people need to hear (and see)." 
In my graduate training I got used to going to workshops for various subjects and conferences. I began to think, why not painting at a conference that I feel comfortable with and paint, and get the CD's of the speakers later? All I had to do is ask!

  "You have a little Red Cadmium, Jeannette? I forgot mine. Just a little will do."

Most organizers when they see or know your work, do not have any objection. They see my painting as an extra perk, like having coffee and tea, or a jewelry or art  display. That one is comfortable with audiences and likes to talk with people you understand is a given! In addition, an artist must  be able to block out everything else to be able to paint. I also love the friendships I develop with other artists, which develop much quicker because we are not competitors.

Also, I am careful to not major on selling my work. but there are always people who come and look, ask for my card, ask me what I'm painting, how long, etc. They're interested in how I live. So it's a nice addition to my presence on the internet, without major stress and having no time left to paint. When teens and college age people come by, that is when I add a little teaching, because they are often the ones who are interested in doing art themselves. 
Makes sense?



Debbie Smith said...

Hi Jeannette,
Thank you for stopping by my blog! I found yours while following Pam at Southern Journeys.
My guy is from Belgium, and we met on a flight I wasn't supposed to be on just 2 years ago!
I have some great stories (I think)about our travels through Europe and the States. I hope you enjoying taking a peek.
Have a fabulous day and I look forward to following your blog.

Teresa said...

I can relate to your guarding your time... I do the same. I think you have to.... time is a limited commodity....and whoever told us we could have it all.... lied! :-)

NitWit1 said...

I enjoyed your perspective about your art. I'm sure many artists in areas of music, photography, writers and various other medias and mediums will relate to your story.

Nora said...

It's very gutsy of you to stand up in front of such a large crowd and to concentrate on your painting. People's eyes must wander to you many times as they listen to the speaker. I suppose they get mesmerized. It's a nice diversion for them as they take in the material being offered. People remember things better if they have something else to focus on. That looks like a very intriguing painting you're working on.

Zuzana said...

I think it must be difficult to teach art. I attended art classes as a teenager and I loved our teacher; he let us paint and only gently guided us through each painting by pointing out things while we went along.
Have a lovely weekend,

Betsy Grant said...

To a true student of art, your art itself teaches - without you saying a word.

Whitemist said...

I actually understand very well why you paint, instead of other things. Give me a couple more years and I will be doing the same. making ends meet takes me away from the things that i truly love to do.

Eki said...

I learn a lot about your reflective thoughts about what you decided to do with your art talents. Frankly speaking, I've been thinking about quiting my teaching job to become a full-time writer. But like you said, it's only possible when one does not have to have a job to earn a living.

Thank you for the thought, Jeannette.

M.Kate said...

This is a very nice post and gives me a peek into your art world. Happy week ahead.

jeannette said...

Ah, Belgium...that was more than a coincidence that you two met!!
Everyone who loves to travel must love your blog. so you'll see me there more:)

So true. I don't know what it would be to have all ones dreams fulfilled. What would there be to look forward to?

It's interesting, but artists who do a lot of art are often not the ones who are reacting to a post like this (because they're very focused on what they do themselves). It is the ones who are love art but do other kind of work in life.

Thank you, friend! Having taught and been in choirs before makes it easier to concentrate in front of audiences. Because people nowadays are so used to many stimuli, I think, like you said that it actually helps for people to stay connected with the subject of the speaker, and is an enrichment.

Don't know if teaching is difficult:) But it takes up a lot of time, because of all the materials one uses. Sounds like you had a good experience with your art teacher (these ones are the kind I like:) )

What a compliment! You are a great encourager, Betsy. I hope that you get to use your teaching gift too!

I am very blessed to be able to do art in the way that is most beneficial to me.Hope that you will get to that place too!

How interesting Eki! What genre do you like to write? novels or science fiction or biographies? Hope you get to fulfill your dreams!

Thank you! We all travel or journey for different reasons:) I wil go back to your blog to read about other places you've been. Yes, have a great week!

Elizabeth said...

Yes, it's much better to do your art when there is not too much pressure to be important or famous.

Your paintings are terrific.

I'm really interested in the connection between dreams and creativity. I'm a leftover Jungian!!
What a fascinating conference.

jeannette said...

Thank you, Elizabeth. Living so close to Hollywood makes me shudder even thinking about "famous!"

In some things I'm still Jungian (like his views on dreams are real attractive concepts to me), in other things more object relational (Winnicot, Guntrip, Kohut, Hamilton, Clegg, etc.) -a real eclectic junkie.