Friday, January 27, 2012

What Motivates Me?

I would like to say others but that’s not true.  I like to be joyful but I stop myself often.  Why?  Because I don’t think I’m allowed to do something.  Argh...  I’m no longer a child but I have these rules.  These rules are embedded in my head.  I’m not allowed to jump up and down in public because I’m an adult.  Why would you jump up and down in public?  Sometimes, I’m cold and jumping up and down and it keeps me warm.  And IT’S FUN, duh!
I haven’t posted for the past few months not because I haven’t written.  I’m writing.  I start then I stop in the middle of an idea.  I begin to question why?  Why am I creating this? Why am I doing that?  Does anyone really want to read it? What about my grammar?  I need an editor.  But I’m not writing enough for anyone to edit it.
Really, is that it?  NO!
WELL.... actually... I know that people are reading my work now. 
I want everyone to laugh and cry in the right places.  I want people to see things the same way I do.  I want everyone to love it.
It’s truly amazing how I think.  I know, “AMAZING!”
What I’m trying to say is that I tell others to forget what people think, if they love their work then that’s what’s important.  So, why oh why can’t I take my own advice?  Easy... it’s them and not me.  Aww phooey.   Who am I kidding?
This brings up a memory.  In 2009, I was walking through City Hall during my lunch break.  The City of Toronto, hosts many different art shows in the Rotunda.  I stopped and admired the Ecuadorian art exhibit.  I love looking at paintings and I always wonder what the artist was thinking or feeling when they did the piece.  It makes me smile to think they worked on something that I can own.  I took a long time viewing the different art pieces.  Some captured my eye and I would get lost in the work.  Others I had to walk away because I felt sick. 
A man named Raul stopped and asked me which one I loved the most.  I told him that I would probably purchase the one with the seagull over the blue ocean.  He admitted it was good but he asked me to reconsider the landscape paintings of the Quito the capital of Ecuador.  He led me to a group of 5 paintings.  His friend Inti painted them.  They were friends since they were small children.  Raul had art in the show too.  His work was in metal but not for sale, too bad because they were good.
As I took a closer look, the sea of white was not water it was small buildings. The paintings were much darker than the ocean but the detail of the city were intriguing.  Inti only spoke Spanish and Raul had to act as an interpreter.  The painting we discussed was called Quito ante el Pichincha. He pointed out City Hall, the university and the glass museum.  He told me about his childhood home and where they played.  He spoke about the mountains and how he travelled hours to get that view of the city.  He made the painted have meaning beyond the stoke of the brush.  His enthusiasm for his work engulfed me.  I watched his childhood come to life in the painting.  How beautiful!
The more we spoke for some reason I was able to understand Inti even though I didn’t speak Spanish.  Raul was amazed.  I was too.  “You were sitting on this mountain when you painted this one.”  I was able to pinpoint where Inti was sitting in each canvas.  He portrayed all of the angles perfectly.  He painted a 360° view of the mountains through 5 pieces.  I was impressed.  His smile was overwhelming.  He loved his work and it showed.  Inti wanted me to have this painting. 
I had to go.  I was 30 minutes late for work.  There was an auction later that evening and I couldn’t attend.  Also I didn’t want to pay $800 for a painting.  I did love all of them. Raul asked me if I would consider buying the one that we were discussing in detail.  I told Raul that if they don’t sell it I’ll buy it for sure.
Later that night Raul called me.  They didn’t get a buyer and Raul actually put it aside for me.  Part of me wished they didn’t because $800 was a large sum of money for a piece of art.   I did agree and I had some savings so I asked them deliver it to my home.
Days later, Raul and Inti delivered it together.  They both realized once I opened the door I really couldn’t afford the painting but I kept my word.  I had my keyboard (piano) on my kitchen table.  They asked me about my work. We shared stories and we laughed about life and how it creates all forms of art. We talked for an hour and Inti decided to draw a draft of the painting. He labelled all the mountains with their names and elevations.  I asked him to draw a picture of the Ecuadorian flag.  He was so obliging.  He described all the symbols and listing the meaning of each colour.  The painting now hangs in my living room over my loveseat.  I still love it.

(From left to right, Rigoberto Pazmino "Inti", Naomi, Orozco Raul)
How does this relate to my own motivation to do art? Well, I remember Inti telling me that he started his work because he liked to paint.  He felt that the mountain sang to him.  It ended up becoming his passion.   The painting I have took him a week to do.  Even though it took him that long he still enjoyed it.
So, what motivates me? Writing and singing makes me happy.  Sometimes I write about experiences and other times I write about flowers sings.  I am joyful when I create and it has meaning to me.  That’s it.  Joy motivates me.  Creating is meanfully because I took the time to do it. 
So it’s time to for me to erase the rule book and write a new one.  Now that’s more encouraging. 
Rewrite the rules. 
Hey, forget the rules – just enjoy what I'm creating. 
Ah, much better!

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