Tuesday, January 12, 2010

greedy artist

Cup of tea with a package of Darjeeling tea leaves on a kilim.
Lately I feel like I've been a greedy artist. Reluctant to let out the images in my head, reluctant to use my hands for anything except holding a book or knitting. Sometimes this happens, and it's not like artist's block— I have plenty of ideas and feel quite inspired— I just don't want to do anything about it. It's a stubbornness, a greed. I want to keep it all to myself.

So today, today is a work day. I've poured myself a delicious cup of Darjeeling tea and I've got my pen and bottle of India ink ready to go. Staring at all these inches of white paper, I am feeling a little discouraged, yet determined to get back to it. Sometimes I want a bit of instant gratification; to be done with a piece in a day or two, but that's just not possible with the kind of work I do. It often takes weeks, months— one piece even took me three years to complete. It was eight feet tall and composed of tiny words in ink.

Ink drawing in progress of a Turkish bread seller by Samantha Zaza.
Alright. Let's get to it.



Wow, what patience and tenacity you have to pledge yourself to a piece for that long.

black bear cabin said...

looks like you accomplished quite a bit in one day...lovely!

szaza said...

Thanks so much Bella and Black Bear! I think there's a fine line between patience and madness :)

EscapeHatch said...

Man, I'd love to see that eight foot piece you mentioned...sounds amazing!

szaza said...

Thanks Tim!
You know, I thought I had a picture of it somewhere on my hard drive, but it looks like I don't... The piece is in storage in SF. It's a four foot by eight foot piece of masonite with tiny words written in patterns that from tree branches, then layers of oil paint over the text to bring out shapes. I did these "trees" for about three years, then felt as though I had nothing to write anymore. They started as a way to alleviate the insomnia I was suffering from at the time. It really worked!