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Thursday, August 30, 2012

A Ripe Moment

Okay, this might seem a little awkward at first.  Just…relax.  It doesn’t mean you are “crazy,” or “off your nut,” or need psychiatric care (of course, I’m not saying that you aren’t or don’t either!)…

Picture this.  You are zooming along in the art studio.  Making great strides toward completion.  Picking the right colors, the right brushes, making the right marks, adding the right touches, combining the right materials…whatever the case may be, you’re on a roll.

And then, just like a water well gone dry…your energy on the project disappears.  You get bored.  Maybe you stop to take a coffee break or even a nap.  Maybe your eyes glaze over when you think about working on the project and your brain gets fuzzy.  All of these are the perfect symptoms indicative of “A Ripe Moment.”
A Ripe Moment is that place in time and space where a convergence occurs and there is an opportunity to proceed and complete the project.  A Ripe Moment, despite its name, can last for as long as it takes for you to get it that it is A Ripe Moment. 

What do you do when you realize it is A Ripe Moment?

Ask questions.  This is where the partly bonkers stuff comes into play, because you are going to either be talking to yourself, or to your artwork, and no other.

question marks

Ask yourself questions about the work.  For the sake of this blog entry, we’ll refer to painting—with the understanding that this could apply to every medium and technique. 

Such questions might be:  what color would I like to use now?  What brush feels good in my hand?  If I could paint (or put) any subject matter into this, what would I add?  Was there anything that I thought about doing to it but didn’t?  Continue to ask questions that require something more than a yes/no answer until you find your energy for the project restored and can again work on it.


If, as once in a while may happen, you cannot either think of any questions to ask yourself or you aren’t getting any answers that move you to that place where you can work again, begin asking the work questions.  Okay…you’re going to have to use your artist’s imagination here and pretend that the artwork is actually answering you. 

Questions to ask the artwork might be:  What color would you like to have next?  What color would you like more of?  Is there something I need to add that I haven’t?  Is it okay if you turn out “ugly”?  If you were going to hang at any gallery or museum, where would you want to be?  What would get you there?

In the long run, A Ripe Moment is a turning point.  It can be ignored, procrastinated or stopped in its tracks.  Sooner or later, if you wish to return to creating, A Ripe Moment must be embraced. 

May you receive happy answers and stay out of the Looney bin.