Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Art- part of my heart!

Mr Toast has set today's Creative Tuesday Challenge topic as "Art"! He is a little mischievous I feel :)
And like Mr Toast's last topic (taking flight) I can feel another story coming on.... :)

I spent my last year at high school putting together a portfolio with the hopes of going to art college..it was the direction I'd always been headed in but which I decided whole heartedly at the age of 12 when teachers start going on about careers!
However, about 6 weeks before handing in my portfolio a conversation with my art teacher turned my whole aspirations upside down, knocked everything side-ways and COMPLETELY changed my direction.
He mentioned that to be a "true artist" you have to "eat and live, sleep and breathe art"... my limp response being "well....I like doing it"!!
I remember that conversation SOOOO vividly. Because what it immediately conjured up in my 16 year old mind was the pained tormented artists that we had been covering in art history...Van Gogh cutting off his ear, Gaugin and his depression. I thought a) that I never wanted to be that tormented b) I love doing it therefore c) that I could never be a "proper artist" which lead to d) that I clearly wasn't good enough to entertain such notions of going to art college!
So I went to University to study Social Anthropology instead........ :)

It has taken me 20 years to work out something so blatantly obvious to most (except for me!!) and to also re-kindle my desire to making my creativity more than just a dabble.
The obvious thing being that my art teacher WAS right..when you're creative you do "eat and live, breathe and sleep " art. The ridiculous thing that I couldn't see for looking was that THIS is what I have ALWAYS done! But its not in the serious austere way he made me feel it "should" be....more the joy and freedom I feel in my heart when being creative, that it is such a natural part of me I am not even aware of eating, living and breathing it!!
I feel a big "DOH!" coming on!! :)

So that's where the above little painting comes from......Art keeps me rooted and present whilst taking me to the highest heights of my imagination. It is part of my heart and what makes me ME!
I love that "art" is hidden in the word "heart"...but look closer! Can you see that the word "earth" takes shape ....and "hear the art" too!!! :)
I'm sure there are more words hidden in there...let me know if you do see any others :)

For more "ART" inspired pieces visit here
Also check out more Blogtoberfest posts, there are lots of people doing a much better job at posting everyday than I am !!!
oooooh yes...and while we're at it I'd LOVE it if you joined in my "Giveaway of Goodness" :)xx


  1. Hi,
    I love this illustration!!! and the heart in the trunk of the tree.
    and the concept, art keeping you grounded while going to the height of your imagination...so well said...

    I enjoyed reading your post...My story is similar to yours, except I studied Psychology. and put art in the back pocket...Your post has really inspired me...to keep doing what I love.


  2. Nice post ... we have many similar stories.
    It's good to know we are not alone in these feelings!
    Beautiful painting! Amazing colors .... and reminds me of the importance of the connection.
    (sorry my terrible english)
    A big hug,


  3. The colours are lovely in this and the design is perfect for the subject. Great job :D

    I so hear you for the career choice. For me it was 'artists only make money when they die'. But for me, I couldn't escape it in any case. Art is such a big part of my life that despite everything, it worms its way into everything I do and now after many years of it creeping around the corners of my career, I'm now paid to graphic design (yay).

    Despite having attended graphic design school (amongst community services and library studies), I still wish I had attended fine arts school, and I still hope to, at least on a part time basis sometime in the future.

    So congrats to you for turning to your calling. Better late than never, and a reminder to be careful what we say to our kids. One word can easily be a life changing experience.

    And thanks for your lovely comments on my blog. You made my day ::hugs::

    (up at 3am and rather verbose)

  4. Hey there! LOVE this piece....trees always get me. Congratulations on realizing your true calling, so exhilarating isnt it. I cant wait to follow on your journey my lovely. :-)

  5. Wonderful post & wonderful piece... I love, love, love that the text spells so many words... don't forget "hearth" - a symbol for the home and everyone knows that home is where the 'art' is! Oh and 'ear' for Vincent...


  6. Ah Jenny, are we perhaps long lost sisters or just gals with similar stories? I feel your story sums up how I ended up in the computer field and not art. But over the last few years I have realized that my most open and free moments are when I am creating. Beautiful picture to sum it all up!!

  7. Jenny, I don't know what I like better here--your art or the story accompanying it! Both brilliant. Love you describing the art and the hidden heart, etc. Very clever piece and well done. Thank you so much, Jenny. And you know, I was the same was EXACTLY with ART school--always planned to go but then when I saw all these glue sniffing anarchists and punkers I thought, well that is just NOT me. So, I went into Graphic Design instead at university--took me moving from London to Colorado to do it though! whoa! OK, this piece will be up with the montage late tonight so do check back in when able adn of course I'll have the new theme too--should be fairly easy to "draw"! :)

  8. BTW, clicking on this and enlarging it I am blown away with the amount of detail here. This must have taken you ages!! What media did you use?

  9. Your painting is so clever...and beautiful. Also, I enjoyed your career path story. Well done!

  10. What a marvelous and inspiring painting and story. I remembering wanting to have a career in Art, and my father told me Artist stave to death, it's a hobby not a vocation. I went a different direction totally, but somehow found the time to get in my art...now that I'm retired.. I spend a lot more time doing it. Interesting how one conversation can change the course of life.
    Loved reading you story...love that art is hidden in Heart. You are AMAZING!

  11. love your story and your heart art, thanks. You have found yourself in your art.

  12. Your painting is amazing Jenny.I am so glad that teacher didn't turn you right off art and you were able to grow in your art with your own inner directions.It is interesting the li9fe choices we make and how we look back on them. I am so happy to see your freedom in art growing onward and outward from your very being.

  13. I love your entry - really do! I love 'tree of life' motif's, love the patterning and the way you can read 'the art' and 'heart' - so creative :) And your story resonates for me as I've just decided this week not to give up my part time job and become a penniless artist living on dry bread! But it doesn't make any of us any the less an artist does it? What a shame your teacher put you off but I'm glad you prevailed because your work is lovely :)

  14. WOW!!!! I truly feel blessed for all these AMAZING comments! My smile is spread WIDE from ear to ear and my heart is filled :) Thankyou!!!
    I'm astonished to hear so many others resonate with my story, but really touched and re-assured to know I am not alone!
    Sending so much gratitude from my art-full heart! :) xx

  15. Oh yes..I got carried away!... Mr Toast, I used acrylic paint with permanent pen on top for the details x

  16. Great Jenny beautiful story and art work. I am a nurse by profession and never had time to pursue art until retirement at age 70. It was kept inside and just denied for many years. It is my constant companion now. Blessings

  17. Beautiful! My favorite thing you have done, I think!

  18. You know, add to the sleep, breath etc. I think to be an artist you have to crave creativity in whatever form it takes in your life. I just went to a little class for something the other day and one of the ladies looked at what I was making and said I was an artist. I have never thought myself as that because I mostly sew, but it is an art in it's own rights and I crave to paint and do other things, so I guess I am an artist, even if I'm just budding into one.

  19. Hi sweet limes! Thankyou for stopping by! :) I SOOOO agree with you!...I've seen the pouring of tea performed as if it were an art!...creativity and art comes in ALL forms...(mind you not sure I'll ever be able to call myself an "artist" !!)