Now that I’ve been writing this blog for a couple of weeks, I’m beginning to wonder why I wanted to do this. The question has nothing to do with the fact that the number of people viewing the blog has dropped rather than increased. There is a fundamental problem, I find, with blogging: Finding the right balance between intimacy and boredom. Too much intimacy and I’m hanging my personal laundry out to dry on the front porch. Not enough and no one, including myself, will care at all. Another issue I’m struggling with is how to balance pictures with words. I really like to include pictures and I think current, hot-off-the-presses pictures would be best, but I don’t always have good recent photos. So I’m thinking I’ll quit making that distinction and include photos from days gone by on a regular basis.
My original thought was to make this an artists blog, which is to say the general theme of my postings would relate to my life as an artist. Here’s where I get back to that intimacy issue. Not all of my issues as an artist are about the physical process. In fact most of the issues are about my emotional and spiritual state of being. Inspiration (as a general rule) doesn’t seem to be something that comes in from a big cloud in the sky like a lightning bolt. For me it is usually a small thought that has a certain appeal and which usually grows out of some other pursuit. As I mull it over I begin to see possibilities for a project and once I get an idea of how to pursue the project I grab hold and finish it. I’m probably not alone in this: This time of working on a new project is pretty much what I live for as an artist. To be completely engaged in a project which I believe in completely. Without such a project on hand, work is sort of like a daily grind. So the goal is to establish a work habit of daily work that is not so crushing as to suck the life out of you while staying busy enough to stimulate the possibility of “inspiration.” So, irrelevantly, here are a couple of pictures, with comment.
The green sea turtle was highly endangered back in the seventies in Hawaii and they were put on some sort of protected list. When I lived there back in the Eighties, I rarely saw them and only when I was out windsurfing. On one of my return trips back in 1980 the turtles were so plentiful, you could see dozens of them on any given day. I even came within touching distance of several while skin diving. Called Honu in Hawai’ian, which I believe means “little brother,” they’re return seems to mirror the return of Hawaiian Culture. This little guy (about two to three feet long, I guess) was in the shore break eating seaweed off the rocks.
At the Raku Festival which is held every year in Hawaii, all the artists contribute teabowl which are sold to visitors and guests for $5. The guest glaze their own bowl and artist/volunteers fire them . Each artist is requested to volunteer to assist in the community firing. So a guest could conceivably get a pot for $5 which had been made and fired by a very fine artist. This picture shows most of the bowls contributed for one festival. I love making teabowls and am fascinated by the tea ceremony for which they are made.