Thursday, June 7, 2012

Thoughts on Sincerity

I read an interesting article and thought I would
offer my opinion, go skim the article and come back
to me.

Most of the time I am comfortable with who I
am and what I paint.  I think my paintings reflect
what I am interested in and a bit of how I live, they
are me to a large extent.
Occasionally self doubt creeps in and I question
my subjects and style.  For me there is a direct
correlation to sales.  When I am steadily selling
I am content, happily painting away, thinking I am
pretty good at what I do.
I think the only time I question who I am and where
I am going is when there is a dry spell in sales.
It is humbling to sit out at a show and watch my
contemporaries (friends!) selling while I am not. 
You start questioning yourself.  I will admit I had two
hard shows in a row where I barely covered my expenses.
I sat there and watched large contemporary work
being loaded into cars and the internal chitchat starts...
I can do that, maybe it is time to change, give the people
what they want.  I can change... they do not like what I am
painting, they do not like me...
I ponder it a few days wallowing in a little funk.
But the reality is that is not who I am.  I am a realist.
I am drawn to antiques and historical places and the
occasional flower and portrait.  I have a deep love of
dramatic light.  I really do not think I can change.
So, I must be sincere to who I am or it will reflect in my work.
I continue to paint for myself and have faith that
my market will sustain me.  My clients get the best
of me, when I remain my sincere self.


Anonymous said...

Andy, we all get in the funk. We can't help but be affected by the ups and downs of business and family life. Your talent which I first spotted in a large field in Manchester is unlike anything I have seen. I stare at one of your paintings almost daily, in awe of the beauty and your talent. After getting to know you, I see they reflect your calmness and unique perspective of subjects most of us walk right by. You need to stay true to old cross county coach, wild Bill Carter, used to say, when you are running up a hill, lean into it, before you know it you will be over the top.

Marjorie Birch said...

I think you really do have to paint what grabs you. It HAS to be interesting to YOU -- the creator. In my case, it's trees. (Hey Andy, guess who this is!) I figure if something is fascinating to me, it will make a fascinating work. And what if you did manage to change your style to something you really didn't enjoy -- and the paintings sold. Then you might find yourself stuck doing something you see as drudgery -- in short, a JOB.


Laura Salmon said...

Andy, don't lose heart. Your work is wonderful -- I have a house full of it! You keep being you and the clients will come!

Joan said...

It's hard to truly get in touch with sincerity, as we all probably have an internal desire to please others. Staying true to yourself is most important. Whether you're an artist or a business person, a teacher or any other profession, there are always days when you'll look to your peers and/or competitors and wonder if you should be "more like them". Nah..... too much work. Stay true to yourself and as Marjorie points out, who wants to spend their life doing a "job"?!!! Horrors is right!

Peggy Garver said...

Hi Andy: Bruce and I love the work you do and we have them all over our house. I really like the one Joel and Laurel just purchased for my birthday, so keep on painting - what you do is really what a lot of people like. Peggy

Grammylammy said...

Amen speak with true integrity; you are an artist, not a chameleon. And that makes me very proud to be your friend and student!

Grammylammy said...

Amen speak with true integrity; you are an artist, not a chameleon. And that makes me very proud to be your friend and student

Anne said...

Great must be what they are as an artist, that is kind of the whole point. Your art is great ands stands out. I was at the Rittenhouse Square art show earlier in the month( where I got your card , I took cards from only two artist !)

I'm an artist myself and have sat at art shows too. When sales are good, it's great.But when they are poor, I keep repeating "this is the life we have chosen" ( Godfather 2) it comes with the territory.

But you came to the right answer of course . If one is not true to oneself, you have nothing to offer really.... whatever style on the canvas