More wonder

October 16th, 2012 by Jan

I am a crafty woman, but not so much of an artist. For example I can take a lot of fabric, rib it up and put it back together in a nice patch work and have a beautiful quilt to sleep under. I can also melt glass rods and create a bead.

What I am not able to do is draw or paint and capture what I see, and recreate it for others to enjoy. (Even most of the photos I take are out of focus)

The art of painting and drawing eludes and fascinates me.

This past summer, an old friend I went to high school with came to Bowen with his wife and three dogs for a visit. Jeff Potter is a wonderful artist. I followed him to the beach one afternoon to watch his process. His paint box was packed neatly in a backpack.

We sat on the rocks and I watched Jeff create something from nothing.

I say that because he literally started with a blank canvas and in a mere three hours had a work of art that captured the sights and the day. It was magic to me.

Jeff spent a lot of time picking and choosing the right colours for the piece; I spent the time wondering how his eye-hand coordination worked and why it was so different from mine.

Art school, interest, training, of course lots of practice and then there is talent, all this played a part. I have to say it was a treat to watch someone do what they do so well.

Days like that always bring me back to what I say about most things. There is a huge difference between wanting to do something and actually doing it.

I want to paint — but I don’t want to take the time to learn how!

In the mean time, I’ll enjoy the process, skill and talent of all the people I am lucky enough to cross paths with.

Thanks for the lesson and the great memory Jeff.

3 thoughts on “More wonder

  1. Jeff

    That’s a wonderful essay Jan. That day is a very memorable one for me as well. I felt overwhelmed at first with the challenge of the beautiful scene before me, but my past devotion of setting into motion the time period to attempt it and the potential failure or success, my process persevered. Having you there watching me was great as well – you saw what I interpreted and the connection that we humans all possess to express ourselves. Your talent is already there in words, so getting the eye-brain-hands circuit is possible through making the time.

  2. Jenny

    “I have to say it was a treat to watch someone do what they do so well.”

    My sentiments exactly! When I’ve watched you teach tai chi classes at the Women’s Festival of Martial Arts, PAWMA, and NWMAF, I’ve marveled at your gift for putting students at ease, for standing rooted and relaxed in your own body, and for articulating and demonstrating a process to guide practitioners from ‘here to there.’

    An artist or a craftsperson? In my view, you are a master artist who, in addition to having extensive training and innate gifts for teaching several life-enhancing art forms, is also quite crafty to boot!


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