Tuesday, September 16, 2014


A writer writes, a painter paints, etc.  The point is, a painter doesn't write (much?), and visa versa. Unless you're Henry Miller. He gets to.

My love is painting, not writing, it just so happens, I can write. Or, I do write. And so, its a bit of a crime to write about painting when in fact, I am not.

In my studio, an open paint box, ready to go. Metal box- beckoning. A perfect thing- a typewriter of painting- barely 10 paints laid out in cubicles- and brushes, and some solvent- and an old palette. Ready to go. Go. Paint.

Yet days go by- and I walk by it- and then a week, then a month. Now, a few years. Of course, there's dust.

Side story: I have a stack of guitars. Cheap old Stellas, Harmonys, etc. But they sit in cases. And the law- my law- of guitars is that if they are to be played, they can't be in a case. Just that single step- open the case-and options flow. Ideas. Most of all: feelings. Which we don't lack, but are confused about. Opening a case allows the whole mechanism- playing a guitar, painting, the whole flow of it- to be an open gate- a hinged door, the secret garden we walk into, alone, and then we get to experience something far beyond our simple selves..  A case: Never opened- is a wilting flower.

Pretty basic, but as I have both guitar cases, and paint boxes- maybe I know this better than you.

What I lack- when I think of it- and its like the whole damn thing- is a motif. MoTEEF. Not motive- that's a murder thing. Motif. Its a Cezanne thing (the WORST PAINTER EVER whom I love).

My friend, Kim, who is using my work, as dim and hapless as it is, in her own work-suggest to me, in an email, that my Motif, or one of them, is Green. And a river. Something else- I can't recall,

What she says true ( if I could recall it all?)- its what seems to work for me, but I can't see why- I grew up NEAR, not on, a lake. In dark woods. Why a river? Green?

So on my to do list- I write "find Motif". Like its a code word. Actually, find a new one. Something that sings to me- something that is above, beyond, something to hang a hat on, something timeless? Is there such a thing? Something that means something.

Right now the best I can think of is this swirl of a road, below this wooded hill, and nothing much going on, but this untouched valley, and beyond, blue mountains. There's tall grass, and Cottonwoods with long shadows, and fields that go on and on- and the heat of summer-now Fall- bearing down.

Its State game farm land- with dogs and shooters, and orange vests- and that's a motif? Explain.