This December (the one just past), I was lucky in that I had the chance to be in England for over 2 weeks, with the biggest chunk of time spent in Glastonbury. I can’t imagine anyone who loves myths and mythical beings who wouldn’t love Glastonbury—there was a palpable energy around the place, and really all the places I managed to visit in England. The earth fairly thrummed with a magical vibration beneath my feet, and I learned many unexpected things about myself, including how bad I am at climbing hills. (OK, I already knew that, but not how awfully bad. I still kept at it.)
I also visited Tate Britain in London, and it was hard to leave—I imagine I could learn a lot by studying the art there (especially the 20th century stuff I love, when the Neo-Classical and Romantic periods reigned, and Post-Impression was just beginning). The paintings were a lot larger than I expected. The detail and impact they held was just woah, and they made a great case for working, well, larger. It’s still something I’m chewing on.
Coming back from England and looking at my pictures, I grappled with a kind of performance anxiety for a while: Could I be as good? Where would I go next? Had my art grown at all? What should I do now? I found I couldn’t start on anything new until I could move beyond what I’d done before; Some of the paintings (still in my possession while having been available for sale) called for me to add more and take them farther. I hesitated on the account of other artists’ advice that you should never revisit one’s old work, but well, it seemed I needed to. Two paintings got reworked: The Rose Angel and Emergence.
Waiting for me to finish was still “Welcome Rest” (leftmost piece below), a sketch I first started on for December’s Sketch Fest. I don’t remember how conscious I was of this at the time, but if you know the Chinese Five Elements, there is some interesting symbolism in here I can only quirk a smile for right now. I finished this this past weekend, along with two more watercolour sketches for the latest Sketch Fest:
Yeah, I think I can move on to the new stuff now.