“Poppies on Clare Street” sold
by Carolee Clark
10″ x 10″
acrylic on wrapped canvas
Usually, I don’t ramble on about myself because I’m not that interesting, but recently I was asked how I developed my style so …
I don’t think that one develops a style consciously. It happens naturally with work. By painting (or sculpting, cooking, writing or gardening … enter creative pursuit here) it will emerge. The more you listen to your inner voice, and the surge of joy you get whenever you create something that you love, the more it will emerge. If I find myself attracted to another artist’s work it is often because they have successfully captured something that I too am working toward. We can learn from others by figuring out what we like (or don’t like about their work).
However, if an artist listens too closely to colleagues, critiques, teachers or patrons this voice might be muted. The more that we listen to ourselves, the more the individual comes out on the canvas.
One cannot help but to have “style” emerge which is as individual as they are. Just as we all have distinct handwriting and personality traits; we have ways of handling paint, imagery and ideas, and having it “sing” for us. Our journey (life and painting experiences) contributes to our style.
This also means that style will change over time. There will be threads that will continue throughout, but our experience changes and this will slowly creep into our work.
I think the big issues are to pay attention and do what makes you excited about your work. When listening to others, also listen to what your heart says about their advice. Most importantly, is to keep working.