Friday, July 30, 2010

Measuring Depth

I'm on a break from painting. 

I just left my studio, 
my head lowered in thought, 
a furrowed brow the result of gratifying progress, 
not trouble. 
I walk past the cosmos 
and globe thistle 
on the way from the studio to the house 
and in an instant I memorize the scene: 
the way my body dodges the flowers 
which hang over the path, 
dead petals compensated by buds, 
my shadow on the ground to my right. 
I carry my brushes in one hand 
and a cleaning basin 
full of dirty water 
in the other. 

When I am immersed in creative thought, I move in one of two ways: quickly, with the sensory efficiency of a dog; or slowly, absently, my spirit trailing behind me. My mind is far ahead.

My senses are alive and exceedingly sharp in the moments after satisfying some impulse to make things. Every sound is crystal clear, all movements feel mechanical, perfect. This is the product of deep concentration and deliberate, intense visual thinking. The elaborate system of thinking and doing is laid bare, humming in tune.

I wish I could map the electricity in my brain during these moments, to get a sense of what's really happening. I'm no Einstein but I do know when my mind is working properly. It's the best feeling in the world.

Friday, July 2, 2010