Here it is, May Day , the International Day of The Worker, the month and the year I have been waiting for a long, long, long time, for my graduation and completion of my Bachelor of Fine Art Degree! Finally reaching this juncture, though surreal it has been poignant and painful and this experience has been very real to me. I know this reality has made me much stronger, and it was worth every effort and struggle, regardless of friends gained or lost.
I have come to some very important realizations, that are only obtained through discernment, achieved through a lot of hard lessons, with a lot of hard work, loving what I do and having an invaluable sense of humour. I realize I have much to learn, I am stronger than I think and I want certain people, places and things in my life, and well the rest can go blow it out their shorts. I am unburdening and freeing myself from who and what drags me down.
Now that I have finished the past three years of University with my BFA , I am taking inventory of my life and evaluating what I want, and do not want to do now. I do have a few ideas that I am pretty excited about and that sure feels great!
I have lots of time on my hands suddenly, and gardening has been very therapeutic and relaxing, but I am soon going to get at my art work again, though, it is lovely I must say, having a bit of a break, and that I am certain will help me with my creative process.
Art making always seems to be perceived as being serious work and you get a fair amount of this when you study art in a Fine Art program, in a University setting. I have never had that opinion. Art making can and should be taken seriously but needs to be balanced with much fun. Learning should be fun! It is absolutely necessary I believe, to have fun at being creative as an artist, because it is what enables creativity to happen, regardless of what you do as work or what you study. It has been long said, love what you do and you will never work again. I think this is what is meant by, following your passion, which I strive for and will always continue to do so. It's what sustains me.
Play and humour have been so central and paramount to my life and it the foundation of my own personal philosophy and within the last while, I have found two particular people that reaffirmed and clarified this belief for me. One is, Jonah Lehrer who wrote, How Creativity Works, It's All In Your Imagination, and the other is, Wayne White.
I proudly confess I was addicted to Pee Wee Herman's Playhouse when I was a younger adult. I watched faithfully every Saturday morning. I never missed an episode and recorded every single one. I was always in awe of all the puppetry the set design of Pee Wee's Playhouse, all the scenarios and actors.
I was always crazy about puppets and having fun through play and my imagination as a kid. One of my most memorable and I think very special life changing moments was when my dear mum who was a great creative influence, took me to a puppet store in downtown Toronto, on one of those warm, rainy mornings in downtown Toronto. She had taken a day off from work especially, so we could do something together. I felt very loved and was immediately hooked to puppetry when my mother bought me a beautiful marionette, a Spanish Flamingo dancer! She was truly a thing of beauty to me!
I think a big part of my creative psyche was lived vicariously through seeing shows growing up, like Soupy Sales, Sherry Lewis and of course The Muppets and especially Pee Wee's Playhouse. I wanted to be part of all that play and creativity. It came together for me when I'd found out Paul Rubin, aka Pee Wee, was a Cal Art graduate, however I never knew who the creator of all those fantastic puppets and the set making was, until today! How exciting it is to discover an artist you never knew about, but you inadvertently admired their work for so many years. Wayne White was this person for me, and I am so excited to learn of the documentary about him, Beauty Is Embarrassing. Wow! I can hardly wait to see this!
I hope you take time to look at the links I have posted. I think you'll find them very entertaining, informative and most of all fun! Happy May Day everyone!
Joseph Conrad (1857-1924), Polish-born English novelist. A Personal Record, chapter 1 (1912).