These last few months I have been doing a lot of reflecting. I am in my third year as an artist and I began feeling that I should evolve into a better artist by choosing more specific themes and emulating greater artists than myself. This notion is something not totally strange to artists. Once I started down this path of wanting to change and evolve I found myself spinning down a spiral filled with vast forms of fine art techniques. Believe it or not I thought I could compartmentalize my art into various styles and themes but when that thought entered my mind I felt disconnected from my art. Deep down I knew that wasn't right. I feel that evolving as an artist is a natural process that should feel right and not forced. I've been told that I should work from my own photographs instead of working from other's. I want to evolve into that state, eventually but what I've come to understand is that our art, my art, should be about expression and emotion. The art that I create no matter where it comes from is filled with my natural expression. Sure some themes and subjects may keep me from entering shows or what not but I deeply enjoy painting them. Today I viewed some paintings of one of my favorite artists that inspired me to paint, Leroy Neiman. He chose a range of subjects each one of them filled with great emotion and expression, some where his own subjects and others were popular art. Perhaps I won't be the artist that always works from their own subjects, but I'd rather paint from a place of emotional sincerity than a place that is forced.
I love portraits of famous actors and personalities that made a deep impact on culture and bring back fond memories from my child hood. That feeling of nostalgia makes me happy. Someone once told me that the people that like my art more than likely have similar interests as me. In order to make that connection to my audience I want to continue to be sincere when painting my subject matter. As my interests and choices evolve so will my art and I can escape any feelings I have of doubt in myself.