Things that catch my eye There is a belief that if you allow yourself, it be distracted from earning money and a professional career like being an accountant or a lawyer; it is to play away from what is essential. I’m afraid I have to disagree. Since I was a child, I have allowed myself to be pulled down a rabbit hole. When most people move on with turning their life away from play, I have stuck at it, allowing myself to indulge in a belief that an interest in what I notice is of value. I have given perception, high importance in my life. I feel lucky to be… Read More »How does a new art work come about?
Overcoming fear by taking one brushstroke at a time I want to share with you, a story about how I overcame my biggest obstacle and my biggest fear. As I look back to when I finished my post-graduate course in Fine Art in 2007, aged 29 years, I am still surprised how naive I was. I thought I only needed to display my artwork in a proper gallery, it would be seen by someone in the know, and I would be an overnight success. How wrong can I get it! I realise there is no such thing ‘god’s gift’. Unsurprisingly quick success didn’t happen. Instead, shortly after graduation, I had a… Read More »One brushstroke at a time
Learning how to live as an artist – Stuart Bush Studio Notes It feels like it has taken me a long time to work out what I think is important and to trust myself. When it comes to sharing my errors and experiences, I want to be an open book. There is a lot to learn from small discoveries, successful experiments and breakthroughs, in the studio, in life and from a positive personal outlook. There is also stuff that I wish someone had shared with me. I use to hate making mistakes. However, now, my perspective on how to live as an artist has turned full circle. I am grateful… Read More »Learning how to live as an artist
What do I love about being an artist? I love what I do. I want to go to my studio every day and have a perfect day. On my perfect day, I want to express something of significance. Once I am in my studio, my mind starts to make connections. By fostering a studio practice with risk-taking and openness, I open an infinite space. Every painting l create opens a new conversation about, What if? I like to stay open to the possibility of generating tension in my work. I don’t want to overthink what I am doing. Words have never been a strong point of mine, so l stick… Read More »What do I love about being an artist?
Dreaming about success Often when I turn on the shower and step in, I turn on a shower of thoughts and start dreaming. I’m not sure why it happens in the shower, but I think it is a favourable place to be flooded with thoughts and ideas. My mind also, unfortunately, wanders when I am painting. Over time, I have realised I have become a professional daydreamer. This is the wrong time and the wrong place to be dreaming about success and imagining the future. I feel the need to gain some self-mastery of my busy creative mind. I used to think dreaming about the future was my reward for… Read More »Dreaming about success
What to paint – The recipe for failure I remember just starting out as an artist, and I didn’t know what to paint. The choice seems so vast and momentous. I was often lost in thought as I was worried about making the wrong decision. I wasted a lot of time and energy when l should have just got started. Recently I heard this advice from Herbert Swope (b 1958) the editor and journalist, “I can’t give you a sure-fire formula for success, but I can give you a formula for failure: ‘trying to please everyone all the time.” Although these words of wisdom do not come from an artist, it… Read More »What to paint – The recipe for failure
©Stuart Bush, A section of ourselves as a commodified object, oil on aluminium panel, 80 x 120cm Often when a viewer looks at works of art they ask themselves, ‘why did the artist make this?’ However I believe that understanding the original idea or intention of my work defeats my ambitions for this artwork. Instinct led me to paint this painting. By trying to understand my instincts my aims are never going to be clear. Creativity is instinctive, and it is buried within me. I’m interested in this part of myself. I am curious about exploring what I am hung up on. I’m not in control of what comes out. Braque said,… Read More »A painting has to stand up by itself
I was taught at school that everything had to be right. I was encouraged to conform so that when I grew up I would make a good employee. Education was stifling. I was urged to aim for perfection; however, I was a long way away from achieving that. Sketching and doodling were discouraged, learning from failure was hindered. As a consequence, I had no idea how to rebound from a failed painting. When I started to learn to paint I use to stop, look and make a judgment about my progress. I worried I was wasting my time and making a blunder. I hated being wrong. It is a struggle to complete… Read More »Rebound from a failed painting
The need to make sense of this world through painting began a long time ago. The oldest known cave paintings where more than 64,000 years ago. Why do I paint? I feel a deep need to communicate something. Something I can’t put into words. Painting is my way of finding kindred spirits. When I look at art from the past, I realise I am not that dissimilar to my ancestors and painters of the past. Studying art from the past allows me to explore the many different ways that artists saw the world during their time. It helps me to broaden my perspective and understanding and allows me to see… Read More »Why do I paint?
Most artists share the same fear and dread, a bad review! You think it’s all over. It makes you feel reluctant to share your work. I can imagine the day a museum curator knocks on my studio door with good news, and there is no answer. The bell keeps ringing…. The curator keeps trying to get an answer until he/she realises something terrible might have happened. Eventually, they gain access to find me dead under an incredible amount of bad art. So much so that they can just see two feet sticking out of the bottom. Do they run for help? No, they are horrified by how much bad art… Read More »Painter Killed By Critique Of His Own Bad Art