Monday, January 25, 2010


The other day in the studio I was asked why I paint.  I don't know how we came to this question, but there it was.  I hate that question.  I looked at Rachael and really didn't have an answer.  I said " because I like to."  As the conversation went on, I realized what a lame reason that is.  It is an easy answer.  Don't get me wrong, I do like to paint, I wouldn't still be doing it if I didn't like it.   But I guess I was annoyed with myself that I couldn't come up with a reason.  I thought about why other artists do what they do but was still drawing a blank.  I said I just paint random things together.  I should have known better then to talk to a teacher/professor that way.  Rachael just kept firing away and I just didn't know how to respond.  I went home and that is all I thought about.  Why am I painting what I paint and why.  It is not just random,  aesthetically I know what I am doing,  but what is it about.  I will work on that this year.  I will work on figuring out why I paint besides liking it.

I could just paint happy little trees!


Rachael, Pistachio Press said...

I don't know if you should paint happy trees, but I do think you should cultivate a fro :)

I think it's hard to answer any question about why we make things. Why are some people dentists or writers or anything else? Can it be enough to want to paint just because?

Jim said...

I need to cultivate a fro, really I do. Then I would only paint self portraits. I guess I am just looking for more passion when I paint, I want to argue with someone why my painting is the shit and be absolutely right about it. I don't even know if that makes sense.

joAnn said...

I think it can be enough to say because you like to. And maybe also because you are good at it. I wish I could paint and I want to paint. But I'm not really that good, so I don't bother. I also think it is about process. The simple process of building a painting can be worth the journey even if the outcome it less than satisfactory.

Rachael, Pistachio Press said...

If you could do anything in the world forever, what would it be? If you say painting, then I would say you have passion for it. It might not be the kind of destructive passion we think about with "legendary" artists like Pollock or Basquiat, but that doesn't mean you don't have it.