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Letter #2-10

Dear Artist,

How are you keeping yourself inspired to actively create each day? Life can get complicated quite easily, pushing artists’ off track. There are many things that can be done to avoid this, here is some sound good advice from those who have battled and won the fight to stay productive.


First and fore most, author Mark Twain suggests, “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” Too often we allow simple daily tasks such as preparing meals, cleaning, paying bills, exercise, and social media distractions to overfill each day allowing little time to actually make art.


One way to avoid this is to have a consistent set time at least 5 days a week that is assigned purely for creation. If you are not already doing this, set a reminder in your phone to block out a specific time for studio hours and keep them. No artist can really expect to improve without being willing to put in consistent effort.


When do you like to create? Some artists love creating late into the night or create late when they cannot sleep. Whatever time works for you that should be your designated time to produce work. For me it’s in the morning and throughout the day.


If you already have a set work time, what do you do when you are not motivated to create during that set time? For me looking at others’ art or process always motivates and kick starts my desire to create.


In the last letter we looked at Frank Bowling’s work process for inspiration. Today let’s look at a piece of his work entitled, “Trangegone (Who's Afraid of Red, Yellow and Blue)”, created in 2008 that is a real motivator for me; find “Trangegone” here.


What did you think? It reminds me of a modern day Rothko. I’ve seen numerous Mark Rothko paintings in person and I often sense a certain element of power in them. To me, I see this same draw in Bolwing’s “Trangegone” as it has a memorizing effect. Here is a Rothko to compare and decide for yourself.


One time Richard Tuttle told me that he just didn’t see what all the hype was over a Rothko piece we looked at together in Chicago. He did say, however, that Rothko’s #10 located at the Seattle Art Museum (the one we just viewed above) has something really special about it. While I’d much rather enjoy seeing the Bowling’s piece side by side with the Rothko example to truly compare the two, I do find that online I enjoy looking at Bowling’s example better. What do you think?


To steal from the opening thought from Mark Twain my advice today is that the key to successful art making is getting started, so go and get started!

Uncle Salvador

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