I have just returned from a fabulous weeks holiday with my small family to a popular beachside town on the Coromandel peninsula, Pauanui( pronounce: pow-a-new-ee). we stayed in a gorgeous gingerbreadesque house , private and enclosed in bush,filled with books and magazines( Readers digests, National Geogaphics, some sports mags....lots of gossip mags! brilliant mix!)
To top it all, it had a wonderful al freso spa...a treat for the family!
I took the paints to the beach and painted. I did. I was brave, painting en Plein air. It is a nerve-wracking exercise for me. I did well blocking them all out( a beach full of lovely, family groups, children and grandparents teens..I am such a diva!) and getting over the fear of public performance, so to speak.I had the iPod rammed into my pocket , using the music to both soothe myself and send a signal that I did not want to attract attention. Great at first but then I kept freaking myself out by moving and accidentally changing the volume DRAMATICALLY and quite pant-wetting loudly .I soon abandoned my efforts to listen to music and went naked -eared.
New Zealand painter ,Douglas Badcock, wrote of his irritation with those who came to watch, or who commented as if he were unable to hear them or tried to make conversation ........and this man was an incredible talented painter!
I simply have to concentrate sooooooo hard to stay in the zone when I paint that I find the simplest thing a distraction. That's why I love the studio. It is contained and safe.Distractions can be controlled.:the phone 's off the hook, the music ambient,the temperature warm and no wind, no insects, no traffic rushing past, no conversations....no distractions.Easy.
The beach painting was hard work . Sandy and windy, alternatively warm and cold ,public scrutiny,hearing some praise,being inconvenienced and challenged, getting over myself and my trepidation of painting in public.....funny how it all seems to make you feel better in hindsight . I learned to turn the insects crawling through the paint into artful marks! I also learned that I am very amusing to watch when the cat that has sat just behind me for the last 10 minutes wraps himself around my till- then unaware leg ,resulting in me simultaneously yelping,leaping and running in a weird crouch in four different directions.THAT'S what gets you attention, not painting! I almost got a round of applause for the effort.
Home again and I have missed my little studio space and am glad to be back. I have so many ideas and so much inspiration I have to write it all down before I forget. I liked the break from technology but am ready to be reacquainted with the big world again.
This is how we feel.
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