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Artists Statement

 

Artist Statement

I don't know what an artists statement is for sure.  I thought it was the work that artists have produced in their lifetime.  I feel that I have always been an artist.  Many of my painting friends say: "I became an artist in 1973 or on some other date".  This refers to the time they completed a particular course in a school, attended a workshop, or perhaps sold a painting for a certain amount of money.  Or it could refer to the time that a particular society or group of judges accepted slides of recent work.

That method may be the way to become a doctor or lawyer, but an artist can't take a test or answer enough questions to become an artist.  He or she will know it in his or her own mind.  They may have schooling to achieve a certain amount of expertise in their own medium, but a live artist will create no matter the medium at hand.  The creative force inside will surface when the artist is allowed to have a free hand to do what they feel.

I have been drawing my whole life, even when I was told: "You can't make money doing that, so stop!  You better do your homework."  I continued to draw and scraped by in school.  After a time at the army, working to support a family with 6 children, and finally a divorce, I began again with a new life and a wife who encouraged me to develop and go after my dream.

Now I am trying to develop and put down on paper, canvas or any other medium what I am interested in exploring.  I have experimented with abstract painting, sculpture and ceramics, but it is watercolor and impressionism that I am most happy with.  There are so many ways to depict a particular subject matter.  Using watercolors to paint is a sometimes chance and sometimes purposeful way to create the desired image.  Both are exciting ways to explore and create.  Sometimes you find what your are looking for only by accident.  I love that elusive quality of what I am trying to do.  Sometimes my hand paints by itself and I am a passenger in the process.  The most interesting paintings "paint themselves."  Paintings is as creative plenaire as it is in the studio as long as you know what you are trying to say.  Artists speak with a brush in much the same manner as writers speak with pencil or computer.

As an artist I have the opportunity to show my audience what's on my mind whether it is to depict the feeling of watching a fly fisherman whipping his line toward the perfect spot while standing in the ice cold water of a stream, waiting for the trout: or catching a glimpse of the sun setting and casting its mysterious shadows through a simple New England field.  The most artistic part of me is not my hand or my technique but the eye that sees things a bit differently and is compelled to share what I see by submitting it to canvas or paper.  This is a lifetime job and retirement is not something you look forward to.  I look forward to continuing to paint, teach and learn just like Monet, Grandma Moses and Vincent did.

Submitted by Robert Cole, Artist

 

Last modified: 12/08/05