The Reward of Art.

I love the illustrated quotes of L.K. Hanson. 

It seems to me that having a paying gig that causes you to be always surrounded by wise words is about as lucky as an artist can get.

But I also loved this particular quote -- it just explains so much.

Because the majority of art exists only to feed its maker's soul.  It is never bought, sold, shown, collected, or even appreciated.  It lives in closets, in boxes under beds, on mothers' walls, and in stacks in storage rooms.

But -- hooray for all the bad artists of the world who don't give up!

Art does not need a commercial application.  
Art just needs to exist and it has accomplished a lot.

One of the things I did on my recent break was avail myself of the opportunity to take some of author Natalie Goldberg's advice (previous post) and do some writing exercises.

I got a pen and a notebook (Writing by hand?! I know, right?!) and sat down at night with a prompt and a staring blank page and wrote.  And just like she promised, it was awesome.  Writing with no reason whatsoever, but to feel my thoughts travel to my hand and my hand travel across the page.

Most everything I wrote will never see the light of day, although there are a few ideas I may return to and pursue further.  But I decided to share one little piece with you.

This came from the prompt, 
 "I Write Because . . ."

I write because there are things that need to be said and no one will say them.

I write out of fear that my mouth cannot be trusted, and a hope that my hands can.

I write to relieve the pressure in my head.  I write to release the stream of hot and cold running words that build behind my tongue but cannot be formed by it. 

I write because there is no other choice. 
I write because I was there then and I am here now which means there was a journey.

I write because the words pour out of me and only paper can mop them up. 

I write to tell the story, making it up as I go and never worrying about the ending but rather about running out of ink.

I write because if I don't tell it, did it really happen?

I write because I want to dare to exist, even after I am gone.

I write the pictures I cannot draw. 

I write because he did not, but he should have. 

I write to be a voice that cannot be taken back.

I write so there will be no confusion about what I meant or hoped to accomplish.

I write to breathe.  I breathe so I can write.  Words are air and food and light, my beat, the pulse of everything in and around me.  I take it in and chew it a bit and spit it out.  Who would know how I could see forever on my morning run if I did not write?  Who would know the disappointment of my cheeseburger?  The confusion at the intersection of my path with others that lead away from where I stand?  

Someone needs to take it down, put it somewhere where it can't get away no matter how it slips or runs or tries to hide.

I write because even if they criticize or disapprove,  my words can outlast them and when they are erased or deleted, crumpled or thrown away, I can grab a pen and begin again. Words without end.  I write.

Whatever your weekend holds, I hope it brings at least a little of doing something you love merely for the sake of doing it. 

It's not too much to ask.

Happy Friday!


Leenie said...

Art feeds the soul--not sold. Those quotes are so true. And it's a good thing--I've just spent a week, after agreeing on a price, trying to match a client's idea of what they want across 2000 miles by emails. If I EVER agree to do a custom job again, just shoot me.

As for your writing--I love your words. Words written are great because, unlike words said, can be edited. WRITE ON.

susan m hinckley said...

Nothing in the world worse than trying to do custom work, Leenie -- I only do it for people who already own quite a bit of my work, because then I feel I know what they're looking for in one of my pieces. But it remains last on my list of things I enjoy. Good luck!

luanne said...

And I'm so glad you write! Here it is for us to take in, ponder, digest, and revisit at will. Your writing is a joy. You share and express so many things I feel, but have not thought through clearly enough to put into such well-chosen words.

As for artmaking -- many of my creations exist only because I needed to make them -- though as time goes on, I try harder to combine process & purpose, because I'm running out of storage space...

susan m hinckley said...

Thanks, LuAnne! You are kinder than kind. The beauty of writing -- and your photography -- is that it doesn't take up as much space as some other things do. And storage space for unused, under-appreciated art is at a premium chez Hinckley as well! Maybe that's why I'm starting to write more and think much more carefully before I make...a function of age, perhaps? Although Picasso just kept churning it out -- but then that's another difference between Picasso and the rest of us, I suppose... Cheers, fellow-amateur!

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