Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Painting what Matters – an artist’s love; a Buyers Delight

My friend Emma was a joy to be around. She was inquisitive and inspiring. She filled the room with grace and charm.
"Emma's Birthday" 11x14 pencil drawing on Bristol
 I drew this picture of Emma after her 94th birthday and presented her with this drawing on her 95th celebration. She was thrilled. She loved it so much that it was hung on the wall in her bedroom where her cherished family photos were displayed.

Emma passed away on Oct. 12, three and a half weeks before her 97th birthday. I had circled the calendar on Nov. 7 to be sure I remembered it. She will be missed!

"Mother and Child" 9x12 drawing (my daughter after her 1st daughter)
Artwork is long lasting. I know Emma’s family will treasure this drawing for many years to come. Her passing made me ask myself the question: “What will I be remembered for?” Will my paintings leave a positive impression on people? Will they uplift, warm the heart, or please the eye long after I’m gone?

There’s a lot of wild, unusual, even grotesque artwork out there, and some that bend the line between beauty and pornography. There are buyers out there for almost everything. Have you ever asked yourself: “What do I want to be remembered for?” Or do you consider only what will sell in the marketplace?

We all need to butter our bread. We need to pay the rent and make a living. But if we sacrifice our values or our reputation for the sake of art alone, where will it lead? Where will it end?

"Does this hat make me look fat?" 9x12 drawing (Zoe on her first birthday)
The focus of your life and your art becomes the standard by which you live your life. Every artist must choose the God of his or her life, whether a temporal material God that brings out the worst in us, or a Heavenly God that inspires the best in us. Life must not be degraded in any case. Life and the living of it is a hallowed and joyous experience if lived well. 

Emma lived her life well. She served her church and community. She served her friends and neighbors. Rest in peace, Emma dear; the best is yet to come!

Featured Artist;
Stan Prokopenko and one of his marvelous videos. Watch him on YouTube and learn how to draw marvelous portraits! "How to Draw a Nose Step by Step."