Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Are you Spreading yourself too Thin?

(In honor of Martin Luther King)
If the New Year is any indication of how the next year will go, I’m in trouble. Last year was filled with illnesses, surgeries, and accidents. This year started out with a chest cold and flu in spite of the fact that I had a flu shot. Hence the title of this blog.

Sometimes life throws you a curve ball and it’s all you can do to keep up with its demands. My blogs have been late more often than not. I feel I'm lagging behind and that I"ll never catch up. I haven’t felt like painting or doing anything, but I’m slowly getting back to normal.

(Shadow patterns on pavement)
One thing that's been on my mind is how much art and design is in nature. Inspiration comes naturally when you take a look around and try to recognize the intricacies of detail, contrast and color that exist all around us each day, but we're either too distracted or busy to notice.

Art usually replicates life, and nature is a big part of the equation. Even man-made objects add to the beauty of our surroundings. A brick walkway, tile roofs, sculptured or oriental rugs, baskets, wood grains, leaf patterns, light play and shadow. We are surrounded by artistic designs from our clothing to the food we put on our plates to eat.

Architecture and interior design complement our tastes and become the building blocks that highlight our personalities. Texture adds a tactile dimension and an element of fun. Our homes should reflect who we are and what we enjoy.

(I really need a hair cut!  My painting "Sandhill Cranes" behind me.)

(More beautiful shadow patterns)
You don’t have to be an expert to combine what you love with what brings you joy. Art and design are not complicated. They are simply an expression of who you are. Within your reach, note how many patterns and designs already exist in your home even without the obvious artwork. Wall art adds a third rail by accenting the colors that already exist and by providing an element of surprise or interest to an otherwise boring wall.

Wall art is like the final gilding on a non-descript room. It provides excitement and completion. Artwork ties everything together and adds a finished look to your entire scheme. Linking up with a few interior designers is a good way to get your personal artwork out there and become familiar with the local scene.

Next time you're in a slump, or you feel you've simply spread yourself too thin. Magnify your surroundings. Soak up detail. You don't have to travel or go to foreign lands for inspiration. You just have to remove the clutter from your own mind and focus on the unique that is already in front of you.