aqua fortis

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Do Not Be Afraid to Step Into the Void

The title of this post is some of the best advice--or most memorable, anyway--I ever received from a professor. My figure drawing teacher at Cal, Dewey Crumpler (a Mills MFA grad, by the way), gave this advice to a student during a critique. In this inimitable rumbling bass voice, he pointed at an area of the student's drawing and said "Do not be afraid to step into the void." At the time, I thought it was sort of funny. I still do, but I also think it's really amazing advice for a creative person. You do get sort of struck by fear, by the what-ifs, by any number of blocks that keep you from allowing yourself to produce creative work. I keep meaning to put his advice on a large banner and post in a prominent location.

Anyway, his advice came to mind again for me because this weekend I managed to step into the void a little myself. On Friday I posted a silly little vignette on Ficktion, for the first time in ages. And today I spent several hours in our new art studio, painting. It felt really good--once I got into the swing of things. I've let my drawing skills get a little rusty (or lazy) and so it took me quite a while to get my base sketch laid out on the canvas the way I wanted it. And I still have to figure out part of the composition (i.e., the entire background). But I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. Hard to be sure when that will be, since time is in short supply lately, but hopefully later this week.

Oh, and I got one more article to edit for the tourism newsletter, and it's about the Modesto Nuts. I'm starting to suspect there's a theme to this issue of the newsletter. Of course, the Nuts is our local A-league baseball team, but still. Nuts.


DaviMack said...

Glad you're making some time for things that matter.