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I woke up on the floor this morning and, while staring at the ceiling, realized…

“D@mn! I’m still here!”

For more than half my life now, officially, I have slept on the floor, sacrificing basic creature comforts, like a bed and chairs, for the sake of my art; to preserve necessary space in which to meditate and work. I sometimes only feel like the hint of a person. And, the reality is… that may never change.

I moved to Austin (TX) with only my clothes, my music, and a stockpile of art supplies. And by March of this year, 2018, I was supposed to be more comfortably situated, within the market, so that I could finally upgrade my living situation, to include an actual life. But, alas… very little seems to work out as planned. And, as I’ve just renewed my lease once more, I can’t help but feel as if I’m back at square one again, despite having made significant strides in learning the business and creating new work. I just forgot to adapt along the way, assuming that whatever previous success I enjoyed would always be.

Fortunately for me, I have to count my blessings as well, and give credit where credit is due, because I have an amazing supporting cast that has kept me fed, inspired and in the game (as I continue to evaluate and improve upon my position). Otherwise, I’d either be on a monster fast (competing for the world’s hungriest artist) or headed home to mom and dad with a ready plate and a larger belt.

So, don’t worry. I could easily justify feeling disheartened or defeated. But, I’m not. Sure, I’ve been punched in the guts. And, d@mn, that hurts! But, that also just pisses me off. And the next round will be mine! You’ll see.

~ to be continued

P.S. Wanna experience the complete flashback? Check out my very first entry, from 2012, here: The Entrance Door

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Silent Scream

When a creative dry-spell becomes a drought, I sometimes have to reach beyond the image to recover the fire. I sometimes have to delve into the clutter of a collective creative consciousness, into the minds of artists who inspire me, to find a flicker of my own creative light.

There, in uninhabited space, outside the boundaries of our supposed 10%, we are all relatives. And, as I navigate through clusters of coruscated thought, which appear like stars within a galaxy, it is often the whisper of a word, printed on quiet paper, that resonates. It is often a whisper… that rekindles the flame.

I hear you… You, whom I would also call myself. And I am moved.

ContinuumSometimes… I get lost in the tangle. I get lost in the confusion of space and time, which carries me through the quietude, an encompassing silence that shares its mass and weight with me until I am no longer discernible from the vastness I’m attempting to fill; not to substantiate it, but to mitigate my own burden, which is comprised entirely of gravity, evidence of the stillness that flourishes at the center of everything.

From the surface, the pattern may appear only to perpetuate the repetitions. But the extremes of that structure have become so abundant and so intricately woven that the accumulation now seems like ornament, from a distance, like a dense cluster of meticulously carved impressions that were purposefully arranged within the enormity, which has no rhyme or reason on its own or within the immediate. Though, we may find ourselves at any time within that same instance.

After a productive month that was spent building a foundation to enhance my Social Media engagement, it’s time to get back to the creative side of my work. It’s time to welcome Spring, and new life, a cycle that never ceases. Though the business may be my structure, Art is still the substance, and that too will never cease.

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Canvas Panels

I’ve challenged myself to produce at least 10 – 12 Plein-air pieces this year, along with creating a series of Block Prints and Monotypes, because I love the idea that Art belongs to everyone. But equally important, I’ve also discovered that it truly is the little things that matter, meaning, that it’s the smaller pieces that sustain my business, while the more substantial works help it grow. So as an integral part of Building a career around my skill-set as an Artist, I’ve made it my personal mission to always provide artwork that is affordable on any budget, while still expanding my own creative language, and this simply seemed like a fun and elegant solution, which I look forward to sharing as it progresses.

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Print Making Supplies

~ Stay tuned!

Happy Holidays Everyone!

To close out a successful year, I’ve decided to offer Holiday Pricing (for a limited time) on Nine Selected Works. (securely invoiced through PayPal)

From now until Dec. 12th all the pieces in this collection are 25 % off (shipping included) ~ Prices shown are the discounted prices (in captions underneath each image)

All Artwork is Framed and Ready To Hang, except “Work/Living Space, 2011”

For Inquiries: Please contact me directly ~ findmichaeltorres@gmail.com

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“So Much To Say…” Assembled Objects (3D) ~ $337.50

Refuge_Eq

“Refuge” Oil and Dry Grass on canvas panel ~ $337.50

Work_Living_Eq

“Work/Living…” Watercolor Pencil on paper ~ $93.75

Catalog: 1992 - Mar, 2011

“Stream of Consciousness” Ballpoint Pen on paper ~ $93.75

Finding the Right Words

“Finding the Right Words” 3D Paper Construction ~ $900

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“Transfixed…” Oil on canvas ~ $562.50

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“Swimsuit Model” Mixed Media on paper ~ $168.75

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“Red Sink…” Ballpoint Pen on paper ~ $93.75

Restless_Night_Eq

“Restless Night” Oil and Yard Debris on canvas panel ~ $337.50

Holy goodness! I thought this week would never get here!

What began as my Fall Exhibition, where I planned to unveil a series of abstract and experimental pieces, quickly encountered obstacles that offered unexpected strategic insight, despite delaying the project. I was compelled to re-imagine the occasion (the date already set) into a Viewing Party, now determined to celebrate the event of Life itself, a vast body of work and the supporting cast (of believers) that has kept my dream alive.

The initial concept for the exhibition remains intact and in the works, and it promises to become bigger and better than originally imagined. But for now, final preparations for this Friday‘s festivities are underway, with all the hard work behind me. There will be no more blood, sweat, or tears… unless I hammer a finger while hanging the last few paintings on the wall. And even then… with a steady supply of wine and neglected sustenance to satiate my hunger, any pain encountered this week will taste like victory.

All that remains is my shopping list (of party supplies), which I will tackle with leisure, taking in the brisk fall air and the myriad bouquet of cinnamon and spice and everything nice that the fast approaching Holiday Season brings. I love this time of year, when the scorching Texas heat is reduced to the snap-crackle-pop of a cozy fire. The nostalgia that blossoms under that spell is often beyond words, though the experience is shared. And in that festive spirit, I am ready for a comfortable evening with friends, to cap off another busy (but fruitful) year.

Emerging…

One must emerge from the depths of one’s Self before emerging elsewhere. And I have been molting for 20 years, apparently stuck in reiteration – perhaps a reminder that the moment already exists, is always occurring, and only awaits our attention… now… emerging from depth, from obscurity, from anonymity.

The artist in me once fed on whatever life I provided. But, no more. I am now learning to feed on the artist who is able to see without eyes, he, whose purest expression rests in his labor, not his words; he, who knows how to love without a body and who understands without reasons or prejudice. He has been reborn from my termination, by the fateful plunge impetuously intended as a restoration that led to my demise, a cathartic release that my alter-ego knows all to well, with every stroke of his brush… expressing… purging… and tying knots where once were loose ends.

Over the last few months, I have slowly begun to realize that I am no longer the person I once was, or perhaps am no more. Remnants of the past that once tugged at heartstrings, lingering doubt that once subdued the fire, and even the uncertainty of a purely artistic endeavor, which conjured defenses in apprehension; all the heavy fixtures that once anchored me to the deepest part of the ocean’s floor have vanished. And what remains is this vessel, now floating, not quite weightlessly, though unencumbered by the bulk of yesterday.

The unfamiliarity of that feeling settled uneasily in me at first, I, having disposed of my comforts, the intricate network of feelings once recognized as myself. It made me feel like a stranger living another person’s life, like a visitor disappointed in his host. Yet, the private chambers, where the ghosts of yesterday dwelled, are now vacant. They are quiet spaces with unobstructed thresholds and unobstructed views, are cleaned and swept, and I am enormously grateful for the prospect of filling them once again, with only breath, to let them breathe and forever more remain free.

Yes. I have arrived, an infantile curiosity without limits; arrived in my own arms to nurture; arrived here, having surrendered my apprehension to the air as I fell. I descended. And with every gasp of breath, I became, having drowned my sorrows in a flood of sweat and tears, having propelled the solidity of this body, dissolving in the luminosity of my lust for life, I took one final breath, and having returned to the center of my being, from which all traces of me spring, I suddenly surfaced, as I once remembered myself from the bed of tomorrow, aroused from restful sleep.

My recent sojourn in west Texas, where I buried myself for 36 months, forced me to scan my own depths from the uppermost rim of an incomprehensible precipice. And somehow – inadvertently – I was absolved, no longer bound by the oppressive restraints of whatever held me down. I was no longer the time traveler visiting earlier days, earlier versions of myself in search of answers. I reverse metamorphosed into the construct of a new man, living purely for today. I became a person only aware of what he is to become; for it was always so, my choice to follow what I have foreseen in destiny, the conclusion that created me. And after all these years, there is nothing left to cover up or discard, and nothing to corrupt the voice of my expression. There is nothing but the next stroke in which I can lie down, one layer at a time until I am complete. I am the blank canvas now, a great depth realized and disambiguated. And from that surface, I am now ready to emerge.

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