Taking Inventory

Brick 1River Rock 1

Sunday night, you know what I mean? One of the first things you think as Sunday morning rolls around, is how quickly the weekend goes by…there are times when I know I’ve blown it for the weekend…I absolutely refuse to review the list of tasks I made last Friday, while at work. I may as well make the same list from week to week, considering how much I actually plan and get done. It may as well be wishful thinking.

Occasionally, I actually make a concerted effort to whittle down that list and by Saturday night, I know I’ve made progress…Sunday is not the day to ‘decide’ I’m going to research SEO! Sunday is the day to feel great about your accomplishments or failures - failures means you’ve tried. Sunday is the day you determine your next course of action, whether your “master plan” is falling into place or is a bust.

This weekend, I got around to working on one of my “River Rock” series pastels. In full disclosure, the list of projects is more extensive than a couple hours (TOPS) squeezed in between loads of laundry and grocery shopping.

This weekend, I came to realize that my 7 day habit started long before I realized it was so. I come from a family of people who never took a sabbath. Mom cooking Sunday morning and afternoon, dad finding someone with a broken down car or something to fix, somewhere. An aunt, who, by 3:30 pm on a Sunday, was on her way to work until midnight and cousins, as soon as they were old enough, skipped church to work their part time job. So at this point, while it feels ‘normal’ to have something to do every day, I have enough resistance to realize there’s something wrong with never having down time. Juxtapose that against the need to sit quietly in an activity that everyone around me still considers a hobby…yeah, this plebeian, working class mentality, that views their life as nothing more than mundane and plain…it haunts me…

* Back to work, after working the whole weekend
* Artist, with little time to be (what about the “higher purpose” of it all)
* Endless list of tasks, both mundane and devoted
* The endless musing, the wondering if any of ‘this’ makes sense

My inventory list looks like the clutter one shuts up in an old, unused bedroom…what about yours?

Your History, Your Shine

The jazz-funk group "Incognito;" they had been around a while when I heard about them in the mid 90's. Immediately LOVED them!!! At the time, I was too "religious" to go to concerts, but I "secretly" enjoyed jazz, so seeing them in concert wasn't going to happen. Juxtapose that against my late teens, early 20's where each year, I went to nearly every concert I could afford! "Positivity" was Incognito's release, Maysa Leak, the wonderful lead singer and the song "Deep Waters" was the replay. I'm one of those people who, when I find music I love, I try to wear out an album, or a couple songs; play them until I can recall all the subtle turns of each song. For me, the artist or group are closer become family. 

I also make it my business to find what else that artist or group has done. I search for older music, see if they're collaborating with others and if they are releasing new projects soon. At the time, I was also limited by budget, so while I wanted everything Incognito, I was selective in what I bought. But they remained "my group." Jean Paul Maurick, aka "Bluey" is the band lead and creator of much of the group's content. Not until the last year did I get a chance to see them perform…they could have sang one song and I would have been mesmerized! Just to sit in their presence, soak up their vibrations…pure JOY!

Many days, I long to be free of the daily 9 - 5. I have certain conditions that need to be met to be allowed to sit in my studio, as often as I would choose and create. I need a following and not just 'fans.' I need collectors and people who "get me." I need to have people researching my past, pouring over my posts and in touch with the sensations embedded in each rendering. The colors have to resonate with them, they have to read the title, their mind understanding in the moment and or over time, their head nodding in agreement. You see, I have messages buried in between the words and images and they don't seem so farfetched that they can't be easily understood or grasped.

Now, just like anyone who understands their life, their skills, their daily thoughts and impressions all tie together into a greater picture, I toggle back and forth between the nitty-gritty details as well as the big picture. In a moment, I can go from understanding there's something greater "here" to "what the hell am I doing with these lines and colors?!" But my overall impression is that "something" is happening here and all I can do is keep at it.

I document carefully and at random, notes on images; my mind is truly a storehouse of words. Sometimes those words seem too big, too great and too many to pour into a blog…got to tell you that really troubled me for many years. But age has taught me to realize, one way or another, "this" will roll out and hit whoever needs it.

One day, my history will be discovered and if you're willing to put in the work, keep at it, yours will be too. One day, your contribution to the greater will be known and people will celebrate nearly every line or phrase you've uttered. The only "but" is that you have to keep going!