Wow. The last two weeks have been superb!
I spent the last month gearing up for CRAFTOPIA, even doodling in the hospital waiting room while we eagerly sat on edge until my sister gave birth: I became an aunt to the beautiful Nora Madison Mayhew on April 24th and everything since has been happy happy happy.
CRAFTOPIA was last Saturday at the Hope Artiste Village in Pawtucket, RI. It was such a breeze to set up and was so well-organized that it really made for a stress free first time craft show experience. Adam was by my side all day, and we had plenty of visits from friends and family which helped the day pass quickly. I sold three small paintings which literally just covered the cost of the booth space for the day. So I met my goal and expectations, though I would have liked to have sold more. The best part of the day was undoubtedly the public response to my work. Yes, my friends and family have seen my paintings and like them, but this was the first time I got to share them with new people. It was exciting and fun and not at all awkward or uncomfortable. I doodle because I enjoy it. In fact, I can't seem to NOT doodle. It is the most easy and natural way of art making that I currently do. I don't have to think or put pressure on myself to meet some kind of aesthetic goal. I just get to have fun thinking about color and form and compositional flow. It is a pure, passion-fueled process that makes me sincerely happy.
While DoodlePaintings aren't for everybody, for those who did see something they liked, it was very rewarding for me as an artist. Adam jotted down a few things he heard people saying and it was truly inspiring to have such a warm response. How can I not harness encouragement from a day spent hearing things like:
"Fun!" "Beautiful" "Wow" "Awesome" "These are great."
"Those are some 'doodles'..."
"...one of the most unique things I've seen in a while."
"It reminds me of things. I don't know what until I look at it, but it reminds me of things..."
"The more I think about it the more intriguing it is."
Naturally, when I create art I can't help but become a little reflective about why I create it, or what meaning it might hold for me on some deeper level. And while I won't pretend I sit about writing intellectual essays on the meaning of my abstract work, I will say that at the moment, I find it especially interesting that I am preoccupied with creating images that elicit everything from tiny microscopic cells to vast environments. From an art-theory angle, the variety in scale of the shapes I use is particularly important in the creation of a successful DoodlePainting. Tiny things making up a bigger picture--this is how I view the essence of life itself. Keeping perspective...small, unique moments, coming together in a dynamic, kinetic flow: The composition of life. I for one, certainly know how a very small thing (can you say LYME disease bacteria!?!) can affect the bigger picture of life...
In conclusion, I find meaning in every tiny circle that I doodle.
Update: Thanks to my exposure at CRAFTOPIA, I made some post-show sales in person, bringing my total sales for the week to 10 PAINTINGS!