Welcome to my blog!

Well, I finally decided to do it!  This is my first blog post, and if you are reading it, then you are probably one of the only people in the world that found it.  It has taken me a long time and a lot of thought before committing to creating a blog.  As an avid reader of other people’s blogs, especially ones about art or Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, I have seen that it can be an enormous drain on one’s time and creative resources to keep it up.  However, as an artist I am driven by a desire to create and share with others, and a blog seemed to be one of the best ways I could do that.  We shall see how it progresses.

I will share with you just a few things about myself.

I live in Central Texas, and have been drawing and painting since I was a child of about five.  Fortunately I had parents that encouraged me to pursue my desire to be creative, and they provided me early on with any type of lessons they could afford and that could be found.  I was an avid reader, and very much a quiet kid, so I lived in a world of books and drawings, studying about the Old Masters.  My childhood heroes were Da Vinci and Michelangelo instead of Batman or Superman.  When I was about twelve I attempted to replicate the “Last Supper” on my bedroom wall.  I can still recall seeing my parents standing there and looking at it with complete bewilderment.

When I turned fifteen, I discovered a fantastic local artist named John Weeks, who was teaching classes nearby.  I signed up and began learning from him until he moved away about three years later.

At age nineteen I traveled to Europe…a trip that would have a devastating effect on my decision to be a fine artist.  It didn’t take me too long to realize that the Great Masters of European Painting had been schooled from early childhood in the techniques and exacting methods of their craft.  They had spent years of study on drawing and painting the human figure and had gained the skills necessary to create beautiful works of art.  I knew that I didn’t have this advantage, and would always in a way be playing “catch up”.  I returned home completely unnerved.  I gave up “fine art” for the most part, for the next twenty-seven years.  Oh, I did some drawing and painting, and worked in the area of faux finishing and church interior restoration, but not much more than that.  It wasn’t until I came down with crippling Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome that I returned to the easel and once again took up the brush.

It happened a couple of years ago that I was going through a bad phase of insomnia.  I got tired of late night television and wandering through the house at night, and so I decided to start doing some simple watercolor sketches.  It didn’t take me too long to return to oil painting, and to setting up a studio where I could work.

It can be an unbelievable challenge living with Fibromyalgia/CFS!  Trying to be creative while living with it can many times seem impossible!  Just the task of trying to concentrate while having terrible pain or fatigue can seem like an exercise in futility.  Many times I’ve asked myself if it is worth the effort, or if it is even possible.  I often go for weeks, sometimes even months without ever picking up a brush or pencil.  But somehow I always manage to talk myself into returning to the easel.

I hope that perhaps someone will read this blog who might be facing the same challenges I do, and realize that what they have to offer has real value…to themselves and to others.  I might not be able to post often, but I’m going to give it a try.  It isn’t the end of the world if I don’t make it every day.

Here is my first picture to show you…a self portrait I did last year.  I regret the photograph isn’t better.  Taking pictures of paintings can be really difficult.

Self Portrait

Self Portrait

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