It must be the love of psychology that keeps me comparing the stages of things to that of a developing human. Nothing interests me more than the way the human mind works, from computations to the construction of abstract ideas. I can feel a piece of paper under my fingers and
visualize what will be put on there later at the same time, with little difficulty; art has allowed my mind to stretch and grow in ways I never thought possible.
Learning art was my Childhood Stage
: I saw, loved, and copied. Colored inside the lines, experimented with new materials, found the "masters" and emulated their work. Read everything I could. I was a foreigner who didn't even know the language -- luckly, Childhood is when things are the easiest to learn and remember, and soon, I was saying 'gesso' right (I STILL get comments about that mispronunciation in my first video!).
I then entered Middle Childhood
. Feeling somewhat confidant, I began branching off on my own, going farther with my ideas, experiments, and ideas. I took what I'd learned in Childhood and began transforming it into my own works. Found the colors I liked, the materials I liked, and began liking my work. Read everything I could get my hands on, trying to gleam some inspiration from the artists I admired.
We all know what comes next, though -- Adolescence
Being a teenager is an ackward, uncertain time when you begin questioning everything
, wonder what you're even doing or if you should
be doing it in the first place, and feel changes happening under the surface that, well, make you feel really hinky. You either throw yourself into your studies or find the darker things in life. Things are bubbling, boiling, and you're quicker to anger when things don't work the way you want.
While, as an artist, I don't have any parents to rebel against, I do have myself. For example: last night, I got the grand idea that I'd use the 12"x12" squares of cardstock I had laying around as surfaces for paintings -- I've been having fun in my journal, and thought I could transport that magic outside the bound pages. So, today, I sat in the studio, turned up my iPod, and started painting. It looked great. And then, I kept going, and going, and BAM -- I could feel the teenager inside me screaming and crying, telling me to destroy it.
"No, I can't do that," Older Me told her, "It is valuble in it's imperfections. It shows us what we don't like."
"But we know what we DO like," she shouted back. "Why can't we just go back to that? To the way it was?"
"Because how will we grow?" I said. "I was getting bored with acrylics and paintbrushes and drawings."
"Then pull out the magazines," Teenage Kira advised. "You thought you were being all smart, deciding to not use them, but you really do like them sometimes."
So I did. And made some awesome pages. Teenage Kira gloated in the corner, with her dark hair and black lipstick.
"See, I told you."
"We still can't destroy the piece. Learn from it. At least we did something today that was different. That hasn't been done before. Isn't that what we want?"
"What YOU want," she shot back. "I like the norm."
"And I don't want to be the norm. I want to express myself. I want to discover more."
So we compromised. I'll be using only watercolors and pull out the magazine images and such. Let's see how it goes. Having a teenager is tough! But tougher when it's you!