Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Rock Stars and Artists

     Well, I don't really know any Rock Stars but I do know a movie star, some very successful authors and a couple artists who sell their wares for big bucks.  I went to High School with them and as youngsters we were friends.  We went on to college together and I have sort of followed their career paths all along the way.  I may not know them well enough to write their biographies but I could certainly add a chapter or two!
They have become very successful in their career choices but I wouldn't say they were extraordinary people. ultra bright or in any way marked for success from the beginning.
    All three of these people had some talent for sure, in painting or theater or writing things down but I knew others with these same talents who fell by the wayside, on to other things, letting their abilities slide.  Many of us do that, the day to day business of living is calling us all and needs attention.  One day, just for a day, we don't write, we don't paint, no theater of life at all.  These days add up and have a power of their own.  They are demanding and art can wait.  We deal with the necessities of life.
    These people were not rich or well off at all, had no trust fund, nothing special to allow them to travel roads we avoided, had no extra strength to stretch a day.  I think they were directional, knew where they were going and how to get there.  Maybe, maybe not fanatical, they were disciplined and created time for their talent.
    Corvallis is an interesting little town in the heart of the Willamette Valley and has produced several famous people.  I knew Bernard Malamud, a professor and famous author.  He maintained a separate apartment away from his home and family just for his writing and so he wouldn't be distracted.  He wrote four hours a day, every day and had been known to take notes while at a party.  Just in his blood.  I remember a story about the birth of his child concerning whether he would be there or not.  "If it doesn't interfere with my writing schedule," was his response.
    My three childhood friends who went on to become very successful at what they do did so by definition.
First and foremost that is how they saw themselves, writer, actor, painter.  It is who they were and each step along the way was cement to further solidify their identities.
 copper etching
   I one time thought to myself, "How difficult can this be?"
I spent two days hunting for galleries that might like what I do.
This was the easy part.  I had a week of frenzy and created a small pick up truck load of my "stuff" and the galleries loved it.
 My "stuff" in a real art gallery!
I went to "openings",  had wine tastings, actually dressed up in clean clothes.  All of a sudden I was on television and in the newspapers!  I admit this was an accumulation of thirty-five years of experience, and had an idea of what I was doing, but really, it all came pretty easy.

 Painting on copper sheet
What comes hard is the rest of the story, the follow through.  Oh, the galleries were a success and my stuff sold and I was flattered that they wanted more.  It is the definition and discipline that I am having trouble with.  Many days I would prefer to just spend four hours in my garden.  Maybe I am too complex.  Too complicated to be defined?
   I am not driven.  I think, maybe, that is what it takes.

MORE Paintings and Stuff HERE


Constance Stanza Extravaganza Extraordinaire said...

It takes more than talent or determination today Jerry, the media, galleries, and interior decorators decide what is "good" art or not! Mark Knopfler says it best in this song, "in the Gallery"!

"Harry made a bareback rider proud and free upon a horse
And a fine coalminer for the NCB that was
A fallen angel and Jesus on the cross
A skating ballerina you should have seen her do the skater's waltz

Some people have got to paint and draw
Harry had to work in clay and stone
Like the waves coming to the shore
It was in his blood and in his bones
Ignored by all the trendy boys in London and in Leeds
He might as well have been making toys or strings of beads
He could not be in the gallery

And then you get an artist says he doesn't want to paint at all
He takes an empty canvas and sticks it on the wall

The birds of a feather all the phonies and all of the fakes
While the dealers they get together
And they decide who gets the breaks
And who's going to be in the gallery

No lies he wouldn't compromise
No junk no bits of string
And all the lies we subsidise
That just don't mean a thing
I've got to say he passed away in obscurity
And now all the vultures are coming down from the tree
So he's going to be in the gallery

Kay said...

interesting post. I was just thinking this morning that I need to step it up..the ideas, the execution, the self promotion..then the I looked at my emails, this blog, and I sit here inert.

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stonepost said...

Pamo, I think you have hit upon it exactly! I don't even want to be a Rock Star! I like my nice quiet life and my secret ambition is to grow the perfect tomato! Just wait and see...

SooZeQue said...

Being driven seems like a lot of pressure to me – it’s good, it’s bad. The definition says “being under compulsion, as to succeed or excel”. I prefer the word “Passion”, it feels less like pressure and I still succeed & excel (when I want to). I don’t think I’ve ever been Driven. I don’t like deadlines and rules and themes to follow when placing items in Galleries. I enjoy seeing my art there and I have people acknowledge my work, but it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. I think I like it more when someone walks into my home and says “My god it’s like a Gallery in here”. Being driven becomes a job, an obligation and that's what I don't want. Yes, many have to make a living off of their art, so maybe that’s why I’m not so DRIVEN with it. I know we are always searching for something in our life and maybe that is the key to just keep us moving forward and learning. The key is to not compare ourselves to everyone else and just BE. That’s the hard part. I agree with you .. it’s the follow thru that is the hard part. So, basically we just have to do what makes us feel good and if that means spending 4 hours in your garden then by all means FEEL GOOD.

AutumnLeaves said...

That is me. Too complex to be defined. Or so I tell myself. Gets me through the days. Fear of failure and ridicule kind of keep me down. This I know for truth.

rama said...

I was reading the comments here and I totally agree with SooZEEQue. I also believe in being passionate about whatever one is doing: that should be enough to drive us in the right direction: the path that is just right for us.
And anyway who are we to judge what has driven people to be what they are, for they are there because they are meant to be there, don't you think so?

Barbra Joan said...

Determination, Discipline, Drive,
The 3 D's.. you either have it or you don't. That how I see it. very simple...
I didn't .. I had the passion for painting, for being an artist for creativity.
You have to want one thing more than another.. Really want it..
Back then I had the tiger by the tail.. thought it would always be that way.. uh oh! Wrong.
So after 50 plus years (on and off) of painting , selling' here and there', exposure, 'here and there' , being in a local Art Walk last weekend was A Big thing for me. I simply didn't have the 3 D's when I should have. For me , the important thing is no regrets, I'm still painting, still enjoying and still doing what I want to do.. I always have, always will.. BJ

Ruby said...

Discipline, definitely!

I totally lack discipline; now where to find it??????