These past couple of months have kept me busy in the studio painting away for a couple of exhibits. It's sometimes a lonely journey as I spend hours and days working away without ever leaving my home or seeing anyone else - besides my furry friends. What does get me out though is any opportunity to put the brush down and experience the local art community. Lately our community has been putting on Making Art Mondays with the Alliance of Kings Artists. This is a great way to be introduced to a new medium in a local art studio which is part of the Acadia University Art Gallery. It's also a chance to meet new people and get to know each other through the experimentation of new mediums.
Another favourite thing to do is to go out and explore new galleries (both publicly and privately owned - commercial and non-commercial) and attend openings of some of the new galleries popping up in this area. It is the perfect opportunity to celebrate new work by artists that I know and to be introduced to the work and artists I have yet to meet. I always like to find out what inspires other artists and how they thrive in their own communities (be it locally, nationally or internationally). Having the opportunity to share ideas and stories with other artists promotes new ideas and collaborations that may have never happened if you're always working away in the studio by yourself.
It is this very exchange that promotes growth in artists' own work and provides the feeling of belonging to a community.
Through discussions, artists can also share information like the best places to have marketing material printed locally, new online art sales websites to show work to a broader audience, or new workshops being offered, etc. All of this helps to keep artists informed and inspired to go back into their own studios with fresh ideas, invigorated energy levels and a feeling of belonging to a community or connection to other people who share similar passions.
This past weekend I had the opportunity to meet a local artist by the name of Dick Vandereyk. He is a sculptor, carver and painter and has lived all over the world, learning new techniques, languages and ways of living as he travels the globe. I fell in love with the stories of his pieces immediately after seeing his work at the Evangeline Artist Cooperative Spring Show. Not only is he a highly talented artist, but also a true gentleman. I very much enjoyed meeting him and look forward to further art discussions in the future.
~ Wood sculptures by Dick Vandereyk.
Often times being an artist means making sacrifices.....but it is the community of artists and art events in the local area which keep many artists motivated, revived and inspired. Sometimes it is moments like these which make the sacrifices easier to deal with.
If you are an artist, what are some of the things that you do to keep you inspired, motivated, invigorated to move onward to your next creation? Do you surround yourself with other artists who share similar passions or encourage evolution in your own work?
I'm off to the studio to paint. Hope you all have a most creative day! :)