Another InstantLab photo. Original was taken with my iPhone 4 and the Easy-Macro rubberband lens at the Japanese Tea Garden in San Francisco.
I took four years of art classes in high school, but without at least some natural ability, well, things tend to come out not really right. Right isn’t probably the best word to use. I think if you want to be more tender and forgiving toward yourself you can make the case that something created in the spirit of art is always right, even if the lines that should be fine are clumsy and the perspective is off and distracting. At the time, I was really frustrated that all we ever did in art class was copy. It was like, Find a picture in a magazine of something and copy it in pencil. Use charcoal to sketch this still life of blocks set up on my desk. Paint the fruit bowl in acrylics.
Yes. That’s a mid-80s Fendi ad. Yes, it’s framed. I worked in a frame shop. sigh.
And, because I was a teenager and I knew *everything* I thought it wasn’t really art if we were all just copying something, I thought This is a copying class, not an art class. Do I get the point of the copying now? Sure. Of course. It was learning the alphabet in order to be able to write down all those words you know.
Now, to me, art is something practiced, something you fine tune and adjust and reshape until it’s in tune with your intent and vibrating back the right chords to you. Medicine is art. Science is art. (Even though they are usually held up as two examples of opposite ends of the spectrum.) Math is art. Relationships are art. Taking care of yourself is an art. Listening, observing, contributing, moving your body, getting dressed, waiting, feeding people, holding someone. There’s an art to everything we do, really, if it’s something that we keep in a fluid state until it feels right to us and then we go back and revise when it’s feeling not really right anymore.
I’m having a hard time with some things. Some relationships. I have teenagers so I’m sure that’s how it’s supposed to be right now, but even if that’s how it’s supposed to be I have to say that I am struggling. I’m trying to reshape and fix and fine tune things but also I’m standing back looking at the whole thing with a lot of tears and trying to figure out how it got to looking like THAT when it used to look so much better. I shouldn’t belabor this metaphor thing, but I’m hoping that time and outside forces that aren’t me will help shape this situation like how the ocean takes broken coke bottles and spits back pretty beach glass. Because I’m looking at this from all sides and I don’t know what tools to use to create something that feels right again.
Amen. Except not so much to the ripping your self apart stuff – nobody is patient enough to parent a teenager without losing their cool now and then. Part of all this is them testing us, so when we do lose it, that sets a boundary, right? It’s part of the natural order of things, I think.
This post is art.