Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Trees with leaves… letterboxes with mail

I spent most of yesterday morning on the phone with the local post office. Seems that they lost the two weeks of mail I asked them to hold. Not misplaced, not farmed out to other carriers, not even mistakenly sent to my neighbors. Just plain lost.

The employee I spoke with did apologize, but it seemed sort of empty. I’m not holding my breath that I’ll get my lost mail anytime before Thanksgiving. I run lines of credit for a handful of my regular patrons and it was during this two week vacation that many came due. I felt like a heel calling and asking them to cancel and resubmit payments. Fortunately, everyone understood the situation.

On another note… yesterday I mentioned an artist torn between two very rewarding careers… one of which offers more time to produce art (at least this is my opinion). How often can artists break the mold and successfully venture beyond the world of self-indulgent creativity? Or are artists more likely to triumph in new paths that further coddle their narcissism? I often think about working in fields outside the strict adherence of painting, but still under the umbrella of creativity, research and philosophy. I’d enjoy the opportunity to publish one or two things that are always running around my brain. Everyone with a love of books has a somewhat buried urge to produce their own story or perspective on life. You can’t get more conceited than that; but is it possible to create while under a different umbrella, one with the influence of money, business commitments, etc. Does the work then begin to fall more under the “hobby” category?

Jimmy Carter thinks he can write poetry (it rhymes, that’s about it) and even the dapper Prince Charles has published a postcard book or two featuring his dreary attempt at watercolors (watercolours - for my friends on the other side of the pond). Both completely believe in themselves as “artists”. As a professional artist, am I too quick to judge when I say otherwise or do I truly know what I’m talking about and am simply protecting the thin veil of integrity remaining in the art profession? – DN

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