on my studio table

 |  May 30, 2014

Art is coming face to face with yourself. ~ Pollock

Slowly making progress this week. Lot of prepping of boards, building up my paintings, layer by layer.

Painting today, all day. making progress towards today's goals. 2 24x24 inch panels waiting for the next layer or whatever comes next
2 24×24 inch panels waiting for the next layer or whatever comes next

I often look at my paintings at this stage above and I think, these are solid paintings. I could stop here. And I have been told by artists that I look up to, that yes, indeed, I could stop there. Abstract compositions. And I like them, I do. But they feel unfinished to me. And I’ve struggled with this for months, perhaps even a year or two. Do I stop or keep going? This internal argument was really becoming quite a battle in my head. To the point where it was disrupting my creative process. Where I actually felt the opposite of joy in my creating. Something wasn’t right.

And I realized that I needed to continue with my storytelling. That’s what my work is about for me. I need to bring in found materials into my paintings. I love the abstract. I love realism. I love time worn metals and wood. I love fabric and piecing them together with meandering stitches, threads fraying over the edge. I like things that contain a story, that have had a life. Bringing all those elements together in a piece is what brings me joy. I spent some time one evening looking through old image files of all the mixed media journal covers that I had made over the years. Where my process was just that- using paint, my photos, cloth, thread, metal, wood, sticks, stones, wire, paper, etc.

And I remembered.

Something new. Still need to attach the wood at the bottom of the painting #studiotable #workinprogress #art  #studio #painting #mixedmedia

This is what I love to do.

On my work table today.

This is my joy.

I have been working with Lisa Pressman for the past few months, discussing my work, honing in on the direction that I want to go in, etc. and she had me answer a series of questions at the very beginning of our talks. Looking back at my answers to her questions from a few months ago, I realized that my answers to this internal battle was already there. I just needed to get back to myself and trust that inner voice.

“Let me listen to me and not to them.” Gertrude Stein


  1. by live soccer on May 31, 2014  9:49 am Reply

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  2. by Seth on May 31, 2014  3:05 pm Reply

    So interesting to find out that other artists go through the same process and have the same questions. Glad that you are continuing through and finding the joy!

    • by Bridgette Mills on June 4, 2014  11:14 pm Reply

      me too Seth. And thanks for the feedback when you were in my studio. Both of the paintings above had been the paintings that I showed you that were making me mad! ha! They are gone now, and these make me happy. I guess they are not gone, they are still there and were an essential part of the journey to where the paintings are now.

  3. by lisa on May 31, 2014  9:55 pm Reply

    It is great to see you discovering what really matters in the work

    • by Bridgette Mills on June 4, 2014  11:13 pm Reply

      yes, i feel relieved in a way. thank you for providing me with a way to get to that answer for myself

  4. by Just Jen on June 1, 2014  4:34 pm Reply

    I think sometimes we need to wear the mantle of others so that we can rediscover who we are.

    • by Bridgette Mills on June 4, 2014  11:16 pm Reply

      hmmm, yes, i think you're right. it was something I wanted to try and push forward with. But in doing so, I learned so much. I learned what it is that makes me excited to be creating.....and that that is what matters

  5. by Rebecca Stahr on June 2, 2014  6:40 pm Reply

    Great post. Been there. I always tend to let things sit and marinate. It's so hard though when you know it wants more but you haven't decided exactly what yet. Glad I'm not the only one.

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