In “Top Fifty Questions”, I answer the top questions I’m asked as an artist. (These are usually asked at cocktail parties and other fun social events.)
Will this painting look good in my home? Great question. Here’s my take . . . if you fall in love with a painting, you can almost always find the right spot to hang it in your home. You may have to move another painting or a mirror or a print. But if you love the new painting, it’s worth the effort.
If you’re interested in one of the paintings here on my website, but are not sure if it will work in your living room, dining room, etc, please email me at email@example.com. If you live locally, I can take the painting (or a few paintings) to your home and we can try them out. If one works, great. If not, no worries.
In “Top Fifty Questions”, I’ll answer the top 50 questions I’m asked as an artist.
What do you like most about being an artist?
The absolute best thing about being an artist is that it opens up a whole world of connections and friendships. It also strengthens the friendships I already have. I love that.
In terms of my work, I love creating a painting that is a personal breakthrough, or that others really like. (The overlap is not always 100%.) It’s hugely inspiring when a painting wins an award, or is accepted into an exhibit, or is purchased by a collector. These things make me thrilled to be in the studio and painting every day.
Do you stick to certain daily habits? Would you think that habits help (or hinder) your creativity?
This might surprise you, but many creative people have strong daily habits. And we go to enormous lengths to maintain them.
Habits allow our mental bandwidth to be channeled to create new stuff (art, music, computer programs, legal strategies, etc), rather than being wasted on the mundane (for example, which route should I take to work?).
One of the conclusions of ‘Daily Rituals’ is that there is no set of habits that is best for creativity. But when we develop habits that suit our values and lifestyle, we are setting ourselves up for success.
Some of my habits include eating oatmeal for breakfast every day (all 7 days of the week, all 52 weeks of the year, with very rare exceptions), and heading to my studio to start painting as soon as my sons leave for school.
One of my habits is eating a bowl of oatmeal every morning. The extras vary (strawberries, nuts, cinnamon, coffee, hot chili pepper, . . . ) but the Quaker Oats stay the same.
I have some other daily habits (bad ones) that I’m trying to kick and that do not contribute to my creativity – like eating far too much chocolate. But that’s a subject for another time.
Yes, absolutely! Being a full-time artist feels like what I was meant to do.
In 2013, I made the decision to leave a 20-year career in high tech to become a professional artist. (While in high tech, I painted with passion, exhibited my work, and sold it. But painting was a hobby then.)
Being in high tech was challenging, interesting, and rewarding. High tech gave me the opportunity to work with so many fascinating people, and I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything.
But I definitely made the right decision! High tech was fun, but a career in the arts is even “funner”.
When we’re young, most of us have big dreams for our lives. Have your dreams changed over time? Do you find that some doors have closed, but other (perhaps better) doors have opened?
Do you dream in full color?
My long-term dream of being a professional artist has come true, and my sons are turning into fine young men, but many of my other dreams have slipped away. Or maybe they just haven’t happened yet (like my dream of exercising consistently).
At the age of 15, my older son Skyler dreams of being a pediatrician, a software developer, or an ‘IT guy’. Erik, age 13, wants to be an architect or engineer or inventor like his Dad. At this age, all doors are open. Anything is possible! They are, as they should be, dreaming in full color. Isn’t that grand?
In this painting, ‘Dreaming in Full Color’, the flowers represent our dreams, shown in their full glory. The flowers are dancing around through the turbulence and beauty that we call life. Some dreams won’t survive this turbulence, but others will become bigger and stronger.
When it comes to your dreams, here’s wishing that your most color-full ones come true!
Your friend, Holly
P.S. This post is based on one of the Top 50 Questions I’m asked as an artist (usually at cocktail parties and other fun events). To see the Top 50, click here.