Out of Rhythm on January 2, 2013

Still Life in the Man Cave

Still Life in the Man Cave

Every brush stroke diminishes the importance of the preceding one.  Revisions, increases of amount are necessary to recover the original structure.  To do this I must organize my ideas; the relation between the hues must be so established that they will sustain one another.

Henri Matisse

It’s too bad, even during holiday, that we cannot control our daily agendas.  Too many household, business, domestic things crashed in around me early this morning that could not be postponed, so I did not even see the inside of my Man Cave until 2:30 this afternoon.  As all of you artists and creative spirits well know, we just cannot control these things.  And once we let them have their way with us, we find it hard to get back into the zone that we so anxiously wanted to enter.

So, once I entered the Man Cave, I was just stuck, looking at my watercolor.  I could not just jump into it.  I laughed, recalling a taped segment of Muddy Waters in the recording studio of Chess Records:   “This    #!**&@#   is   #@#)*$#   my   @)#*%*@($*#    up!!!”  He was complaining about Leonard Chess insisting that he begin the song immediately when prompted.  “I can’t start just like that!  I have to warm it up, Baby!  I have to get into it!  I can’t just hop in on the first beat!”

And so, I looked, and I dabbed, and I looked some more, and I dabbed, then I blotted out, then I tried again, and I looked, I dabbed, and I blotted out.  Again, I felt that I was doing the Willem de Kooning thing–his contemporaries laughed about how he would scrape off an hour’s worth of paint and let the junk fall to the floor, then begin again on the “cleansed” canvas.  I just can’t seem to get into rhythm today.


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January 2 Still Life

January 2 Still Life

O.K.  The above was posted when I had managed to accomplish nothing.  Now an hour has passed, and a few things have been added to the still life painting.  I have been working (and erasing and re-working) the burlap coffee bean bag that hangs on the right side of the door, and trying to re-do a disaster that occurred when my purple background ran down all over my coffee percolator (that required much scrubbing, re-drawing and repainting).  I have also been adding scratches and chipped paint to the door all around, and returned to work on the doorknob and locking plate.  Now that the rhythm has begun, the light has vanished.  So, I guess I’ll spend the rest of this night reading, reflecting, journaling–things I have neglected the past couple of days.  After all, the New Year has arrived.  Time to turn pensive, yes?

Thanks for reading.  Hopefully tomorrow I can get started on this painting early, assuming another crisis doesn’t flare up.

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2 Responses to “Out of Rhythm on January 2, 2013”

  1. Jane Newton Says:

    Some days are diamonds, and some days are rust. (Tom Petty). Sorry to hear you had so many obstacles today, David. I do know how annoying that can be. It happened to me on New Year’s eve at exactly 3:00 PM.

    However, rest assured, your painting looks amazing!


    • davidtripp Says:

      Hi Jane. Your comment about 3:00 p.m. stuck with me on New Year’s Eve. Apparently the moment has still stuck with you. I set the alarm early this morning to get after painting, with no distractions, but wow! WordPress has just emailed me that I will be on their “Freshly Pressed” page in the next day or so. How on earth do I settle down now and paint?! I need to pull my head back into reality and do what’s before me–paint.


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