Within the essence of each moment that we exist, we continually witness the subtraction of another moment while not knowing if it will be replaced. When working on a new painting I am continually struggling to reside in the middle ground between what I know and what I do not know. On the one side is tradition, technique and the knowledge of what has passed before me. On the other side is the unknown. This unsettled middle ground is inhabited through the force of impulse. There is a dissonance in this place that is both invigorating and scary. I can easily lean on what I know—yet leaning only produces what I know in a distorted and often clumsy way. Grabbing impulse, and the resultant dissonance, is being left wide-open to a scary landscape that rewards me with new confidence. So, as I begin this next phase of life I intend to live in dissonance in order to make each moment replaceable with work that is coming from impulse and not from a studious reverence for what has passed before or what I have been taught.
It will be fascinating to see how the atmosphere of Portland will influence what I paint. I am also grateful that I do not have to rely on selling my work to survive. It is, in fact, a supremely selfish time that I am living. I can do what ever I want. This freedom is frightening. I have no excuses. My suspicion is that I will move deeper inside and be more deliberate in letting my instinct inform which brush and paint to grab. I suspect that my next chapter will reveal more than the last—which has been as much about learning as sailing into uncharted waters. I suspect that through impulse I learn more about who I am.