Work’s been keeping me inside for most of the daylight hours this summer samosa the landscapes I’m drawing are of the aquarium or in my head. This one was inspired by a collection of flowers and critters I did a couple years ago for a show.
For the first Saturday and as many Saturdays as I can remember, I didn’t have a class or a fair, Thing1 didn’t have a job, and the Big Guy wasn’t working.
We have plenty to do. The yard has been professionally neglected all summer, but still come out with everybody home, we felt like we should look for something to do.
That’s how we found ourselves driving through The rolling hills of Washington County, New York. Thing1’s driving did nothing for my painting skills, but it did wonders for my creative spark.
Suddenly I can’t wait to get back in the studio.
It’s taken me a little time to find the Moody side of summer, but the constant rain storms are making the painting easy again.
I love to stop and ponder the headless statue whenever I go over to Bedlam Farm, the home of bestselling author John Katz and artist Maria Wulf.
This weekend I was there to participate in their semi-annual Open House, celebrating Rural Art and the creative spark that lives in all of us. I love the Open House because you can’t get up the driveway without running into an old friend and fellow art junkie, but this year there was something deeper to love, and it gave me a clue as to what might have happened to the pilgrim’s head.
As happens with every Open House, people from all walks of life and points of view came together to enjoy the art. Throughout the day I overheard people praising the work of others. Sitting under the apple tree on a wicker love-seat, I heard one visitor contemplating reviving her creative life as another enthusiastically encouraged her. We watched sheep herding and listened to kids relatively new to this country sharing their musical talents with a damp-eyes audience.
This weekend ended up being, for me, about nurturing the idea that the things we have in common–the things that bind us–are more beautiful and powerful and than those that divide us. There seemed to be a mass mutual recognition that our creative sparks are worth fanning and when we come together to encourage people’s gifts, we are all better.
That thought kind of carried my head into the clouds as I sat on that love-seat on Sunday, and I realize that’s probably what happened to the little pilgrim statue at Bedlam Farm too. I think he found himself at the altar of creativity (featuring a recycled art sculpture by Ed Gulley) and, keeping his feet on the ground, let his head get lost in the clouds as he chased his own creative spark.
It’s a worthy pursuit, and I think all of us who had a chance to sit near the altar this weekend went home full of sparks to nurture and share.