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Clarity or Delusion?

abstract automatic drawing life as an artist parc andré citroën the artist's journey May 10, 2023

Clarity or Delusion?

When I glanced up to check the clock, I noticed several  people quickly look away. Their puzzled expressions took a bit longer to fade.  Apparently, they had been staring at me as I sat patiently in the waiting for my name to be called, sketchbook on my lap and fountain pen in hand making little dots all over the page in a haphazard fashion whether looking at the page, or not.  I have become obsessed with connecting the dots on a page, making up different rules to follow and allowing myself to be completely mesmerized by the patterns and forms that are created.  With each new page I am led on a different journey, connecting with my past, my present and the possibilities that may lie in my future.  

When I returned to automatic drawing after far too many years of falling out of the practice, I hadn't expected the results I'm currently experiencing.  Whether it's Connect-the-Dots, Spiraling, Blind Movement or Swooping, the result is the same.  I'm taken on a journey of self-discovery.  I remember my dreams more often.  I have better clarity when it comes to prioritizing my daily tasks related both to art and to daily existence and environment. I feel better balanced and joyful.  It is easier to let go of the annoyances of our modern world.  I am able to keep my creativity flowing throughout most of the day and night.

In the video above, I share each page of the current automatic drawing sketchbook.  It has only a couple of blank pages left for drawings.  Earlier this week, during The Artist's Journey Sketchbook Storytime, I shared the stories behind most of the sketches, various rules I've made for different connect-the-dot drawings, and answered questions asked during the live event.  Sketchbook Storytime is scheduled for every Monday at 3 pm Eastern Time.  Recordings of all the live events are available to subscribing artists.  Artists will be able to share their own sketchbooks and stories during the live events.

At times, it feels as if I am living in a house of mirrors.  Since I began the PAC series, whether I like it or not, I am experiencing the work as mirrors that reflect my experiences back to me ... not the experiences I wish I had or want to have ... the experiences I actually did have or do have. This has always been my inner goal.  this was why I stepped on the path to be an artist long, long ago.  My goal is to express to the outer world that which I experience on the inner world.  By inner world, I am also taking about my exploration of our entire universe/multiverse ... how it came to be and if there is a WHY it came to be.  


PAC No. 14 (mixed media on canvas) 18" x 18" (46 x 46 cm) 

My earliest memory of experiencing ENERGY that exists everywhere is when I first found myself dancing and twirling with the beautiful "ribbons of light" that swirled around inside of my head, dancing to a sound I could not hear.  I matched their rhythms with my motions.  I may have been four or five years old.  Dancing with the multi-coloured ribbons of light filled every cell of my body with joy.  Perhaps that is why it has always been essential that my work expresses a sense of movement through space.

Of course, not everyone wants a portrait of their dog looking like a ball of energy exploding through the universe.  And so, I had to learn a lot of skills that led me adrift from my personal goal.  I see now that all those extra skills have been building blocks that created structures upon which to build that bridge that is now connecting me to where I've always wanted to be as an artist.  From now on it will be like island skipping.  Each island I reach will give me a view of an island I hadn't seen before and I will be compelled to learn more skills to build a bridge to the next island.  This is a never-ending process of building bridges.  Some of the islands I reach may not be at all appealing to me and I'll start building a new bridge immediately.  Some may be so wonderful that I don't want to leave.  Eventually, my curiosity will get the better of me and I'll start building another bridge.  There's no way of knowing which island will be my final resting place. And so it is.

PAC No. 19 (graphite on paper) 14 1/8" x 20" (36 x 51 cm)

There's a great deal to catch you up on, but I'll keep it simple.  The original concept of being able to serve several different groups of artists in the one community on Kajabi simply didn't work.  I knew that, you knew that ... but apparently it took this long for the techs at Kajabi to realize that.  Jump forward hundreds of hours of computer frustration and I had to eliminate the free access to what I originally called The Colour Mapping Community.  It is now The Artist's Journey Community and the only access to it is through a monthly subscription.  All of you who joined The Colour Mapping Community are eligible for a free, one month trial period (Contact me if you have not already taken advantage of this offer.) I am in the process of simplifying the navigation through the community and all of its resources (videos, tutorial, forums, challenges, workshops, live events, live critiques, meetups, resource pages, pdf publications and member galleries).  I imagine I will be able to make a fair amount of progress during the months of recovery following next week's hip replacement surgery. There's already an incredible number of workshops and videos that you have access to with an active subscription of $20/month (cancel at any time). 

I have more than sixty jars of lake pigment ready for grinding an transforming into watercolours!  Gardens are prepared and ready for planting Dye Plants. Studio is fairly cleared for the next dozen PAC paintings to be created.  I've been reworking several of the first forty paintings and am starting fresh with No. 47.  Still to be reworked are No.s 43 and 39.

 That's more than enough updating for now, even though I didn't include the element of delusion which really needs its own post.  A hint: I'm beginning to be able to map different body sensations in different locations depending on the TYPE of creativity that is being experienced.  This is a bit bizarre to me, but it is definitely helping to fine-tune my focus and to prioritize what I spend time doing.

Exciting times ahead.

Thank you for reading my blog.


Link to The Artist's Journey


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