Two more pieces from Day Dreaming at Night

1. At this point in my career I’m trying to implement new approaches to my creative process. Sometimes it’s good to completely forget everything you know, or what you think you know, about art, and start fresh. What I create is all a reflection of who I am as a person and my inner growth as an individual. That’s how I see it right now anyways. I find that when I work on improving myself then my art becomes ‘better’, to me. I know that ‘better’ is somewhat subjective but what I mean is that my art evolves into something beyond what I have already done, because I am changing. Or possibly, what the painting represents becomes more personal and I value the meaning in front of it with a deeper connection. My life is the art and the art is a reflection of me. I think everyone has a person they envision themselves to be, we all have an idea of who that is. Sometimes we are going away from our inner person and at other times we are going towards this idea of who we intuitively know we should be. What I’m trying to convey is that when you step into the shoes of who you really are, figuratively [(obviously) or literally.? I don’t really know for sure.], then life starts to change for the better. You know inside of yourself what you should be doing in or with your life. This ‘knowing’ is a constant gentle feeling. People are afraid of confronting the unknown because they don’t know what’s going to happen, so they often times stay in a comfort zone of repetitive ways and never fully develop as a human. To me it’s more frightening to stay in a blinded dark existence than to work towards self-development. You can call that small voice inside yourself whatever you want, it’s communicating to you all of those things for a reason. When you say, “I know I should do that”, and then do something else, you’re only letting yourself down. I’m someone who has been labeled as being mentally ill. People have a misconception of people that are mentally ill. In the previous sentences, I claim that I have some kind of understanding about how this life thing works through the human condition. I am not crazy, I have had a hard time living in a world where people are not being honest with themselves, while being blinded by false illusions of what life is really meant to be. I can’t necessarily prove what life is about but there are a lot of ideas that are consensual among many different cultures and people that have been passed around throughout history. These ideas, or principles, seem to work for anyone who puts them to use. Don’t get me wrong either, I am not perfect at living up to my fullest potential. I learn from my mistakes as I continue to strive towards a better life. I have messed up a lot. I could go on and on about the whole issue but it starts with you. You don’t have to get consumed by the ‘bigger picture’. Start with today and pick up the socks on your floor. Go for a walk. Just start doing those simple things that you always think of that you push away. You’re thinking them for a reason so start living.

2. I’ve realized something. I just uploaded one of my paintings titled Smoking Cigarettes in Traffic, to my website. Something I was thinking while I was driving home from picking up the piece from Art Warehouse is that people are afraid/uncomfortable/ or dismissive, or something, about absolutes or the unknown. If there is not a solid definitive answer to something, sometimes people lose their minds. It’s like their angry that you might know something that they don’t. It’s kind of funny, really. Maybe truth is different for everyone. Why are you freaking out because something doesn’t make sense to you? With some things you have to be comfortable with not knowing. There are many things if life that I do not know and I’ve had to let go of some things because no one will ever know. It’s kind of like those people have to feel superior that if they don’t know or don’t understand then it must be bullshit or something. With art, if there is not a definitive reason or meaning then people tend to be offended or angry. Maybe there is no overall absolute conclusion. How would anyone know that? In the interview I recently did, yesterday, it was almost as if I had to defend or explain what is or isn’t art. That isn’t up for me to decide. And, I really don’t care. A beautiful thing about art is to break out of the figurative boxes and category that society tried to organize everything in. When people ask me what my style is, I don’t know what to tell them. My style is Robert-The Key of Me. And everything I just said is something that would potentially go through my mind as I was taking a drag Smoking Cigarettes in Traffic.

Just because our versions of truth may have different definitions doesn’t mean we don’t have to accept each other. If you’re following the vision that you have for yourself then we are the same person. When you gain that level of awareness, those who are lost in the lies that were once comfortable to them.. that was you once. Just because your stomach is full doesn’t mean they are lesser. With the knowledge you have acquired you can be an example that we only hope will allow others to light a match in their own darkness. Since we cannot change others we must change ourselves. It’s not about sustaining our legacy. It’s about sustaining these ancient truths that have been verified all through history. It is what’s inside that is the legacy. You are just the translator of it. We all have our own personal paths that we see that is beyond words. Guide others towards seeking their own path. It’s a slow elusive solid foundation only known by the individual. You can’t make someone else see but you can show them where their eyes are.

Controversy In the Art World

Artists that do their own thing get a lot of flack. One reason this is so is because they are standing up to the giants. A lot of the artwork that you see in museums are pieces from artists who did their own thing, they didn’t conform to any rules just to make a dollar. During their time, they were typically very controversial people, but only because they were made out to be that way. There are too many people out there trying to control art, but that isn’t what art is. There are a lot of phonies out there that are involved in art just to be an image, or to portray the illusion of what they think an artists is-they are pretending. And these are the people who get offended by the artists who do what they want.

These false persona artists who are just playing a role may have some temporary success here and there, but the people who are truly passionate about what they do, and create from the heart, are the ones who have their work hanging in museums and are the ones who are written about all throughout the history books. Everyone has their opinions, but as an artist you can only read and listen to what others say so much before you have to just make art. Learning from others and practice are great but its more about being true to yourself and listening to the mindset that these great artists had. Aside from anything visual, what are some common ground factors that make a great artist great? I hear the little things here and there more so than their actual work. I connect with greatness, whoever its projected from. They’re not telling you so that you make exactly what it is they are making. They’re sharing their experiences so that it leads you to your version of this truth.

Here are a few that stand out to me (paraphrased):

“Whoever learns to paint like a child has mastered art".” -Picasso

“There will be someone after me who uses color even more.” - Van Gogh

“Write the truest thing you know.” - Hemingway

“There are two important days in a mans life, the day he was born, and the day he figures out why.” - Mark Twain

I could go on and on with these. I don’t think about them as much as I did when I was younger because that’s what led me to where I am now, and I focus on my own style. I go back and find new things all of the time, but I’m more concerned with forwarding what I already know. All of the things that I read, heard, and saw from other brilliant people, created the picture that I am today. It’s not about making yourself, or your art, look like someone else’s. It’s about being true to yourself and true to the art that you create.

You can’t put chains on greatness. If you are doing what you know and love, someone is going to recognize that. There may be more people who don’t like you, and talk bad about you, but that’s good. You don’t need those people. All of it is moving you in the direction you need to be and weeding out the people who don’t belong. Someone is going to want to find out the truth about you, and invest in you because they see lies and envy flowing from the eyes of others, and they know that you’re the one who’s being real and genuine. Those stories people are saying, whether true or not, are stirring curiosity in peoples minds-they are interested to know more. This is what I’m seeing at the moment.