The Other-abled Artist

cropped-cropped-beach-sept-12-0391.jpgSometimes when I paint I feel as if I’m slogging through a marsh of confusion and indecision.  Is my subject strong?  What about my color pallet?  Prospective? Technique?  Where is the light and is it too harsh, not strong enough? and on and on and on.  I second guess all the decisions I made when I planned the work.

To be honest I confess that I don’t do enough planning before I put paint to paper.  I tend to paint my subject just as I found it rather than crop out elements that don’t add value to the painting.  I do usually have some color choices in mind, but rarely do an actual color swatch or a value scale.  I am fairly good at prospective but I tend to rely too much on my “eye” and that can mean redoing my drawing.  Sometimes I don’t even think about the light source until I’m way into the painting – wrong!  Bottom line, I need to slow down and think through each new painting and answer all the technical questions BEFORE I put paint on my brush.  

I have the same problem with personal interactions.  You see, I have Asperger’s Syndrome. A condition not diagnosed until well into my adulthood.  Now that I understand it, I realize that I need to spend more time planning my personal interactions with friends, family and colleagues.  Just like painting, I need to consider how strongly I want to make a point, look for the source of light (the positive side), realize that all  issues are not black and white but can be many colorful shades, and, bottom line, slow down and think through each interaction BEFORE I put words into the air.  

Art can be wonderful therapy for those who are other-abled, even an opportunity to present a different view of life.  I see the world differently than some, but perhaps not as clearly as others in certain circumstances.  So, I’m working on that in my interactions and in my art and I hope you will remember to plan before you paint as well.  

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