Discovering New Loves – Painting
2017 was the year I revealed my newly discovered passion for painting, and dared to share my work on these pages. So I thought it fitting to end the year with an unfinished painting of a passionate embrace, inspired, no less, by the works of Emil Nolde, Edvard Munch, and Marc Chagal, as follows:
Nearly half my posts in 2017 were art related, whether of my own work, or the work of favorite artists, or just about the craft and love of painting. One favorite, my own and others, was a rhapsody on Naming a Painting, “Like Two Lovers in Conversation.”
Several posts paired art with music, starting with Friday Pairings – Butterflies & Vivaldi and including Almost Blue, Jazz & Art, which, along with Artists & Writers in Their Studios, were two art-related posts that made the Top-Ten chart in my blog sidebar, a list that traditionally does not move much.
Renewing Old Loves – Playing Music
But 2017 was also a year for reuniting with old loves, a passion of my youth, playing piano. I treated myself to a baby grand, something I never dreamed I would own, and began relearning to play. Old favorites like Beethoven’s For Eloise and Moonlight Sonata were flowing from my fingertips once again.
In pursuit of my music I discovered, amazingly, two master pianists that you would’ve thought I’d already known: Bill Evans (jazz) and Martha Argerich (classical). I wrote about them and shared their music in Playing Piano, a Full-Body Workout for the Brain and Perfect Pairings, Evans’s “Peace Piece” & Sapiro’s Skies.
In a way, 2017 was the year for making time and space in my life and my home for all my loves, old and new, which I also wrote about. But it wasn’t, isn’t, easy.
Returning to My First Love – Writing
As new loves (painting), and renewed ones (playing piano), took center stage in my life, there seemed little time for my first love, writing, apart from blogging. And so I made a concerted effort to increase my blogging output.
When I started blogging, I averaged one post every 7 to 10 days. But in 2015 and 2016, when my life changed in a dramatic way, my blogging fell off, and once or twice a month became the norm.
This year I made a concerted effort to pick up the pace. Inspired by my 5-year blogging anniversary in July, my posts nearly doubled over the next few months, with 8 posts in August, a new high.
After that flurry, I’m back to about once a week now, and this feels like a good, satisfying and sustainable, pace.
But as much as love blogging, and I DO think of it as “real” writing, I miss creative writing. The novels that have been pushed aside, that wait patiently for my return, still call to me, as I wrote about early this year in Which Would You Choose, My Art or My Novel? Clearly, art won that contest in 2017. But I promised myself that I would return to my novels in 2018. It’s a promise I mean to keep.
Part of that return will be wrapped up in my blog posts. I find writing about writing inspiring. It gets my creative juices flowing. When I’m thinking out loud on paper about my characters, my themes, their dreams, what drives them, I discover that they are also my dreams, my themes, what drives me essentially, as a writer, an artist, a blogger. Even the music I love and love to play comes from the same place that feeds my soul and fires my passion to create.
In a way, it’s all about exploring our passions, the things that set our souls on fire, and sharing those loves with others. Because love is not love if it does not spill out over onto everything we touch, and touches all who come within its reach.
Wishing you all a happy and passionate embrace of the coming New Year.