An Artist’s Tale

Here’s me, writing these blogs week after week – since December’11,  putting my thoughts of Science, Technology, and recently more Psychology and Pagan spirituality. It occurs to me that I’ve left out (till now) an important part of me from the bigger picture.  I am an Artist – and have been one, all my life – long before I could talk in english, long before I believed in deities, and long before I learnt the Sciences! In fact I used to define my identity as `An Artist’! (which no doubt will shock so any who have come to know me in the recent 20 years!)

From a childhood age, I have drawn and painted (water colours) and art comes rather naturally for me – then and now – though nowadays I don’t seem to do much of it with pencils, papers & paint brushes. These days it’s mostly photographs and Graphics softwares.  Unless of course  it’s a bnaer or a ritual backdrop, or a mask or some prop!  But in my heart of hearts, that really doesn’t count or satisfy me!  Gone are the mountain ranges and sun rises, sea sides and sun-sets, farms, cows, elephants, peacocks and monkeys, old railway tracks and coal burning trains – and even some festivities of the local temples!  Those were the pre-14 years of my art world.  Now it’s fantasy creatures, gods and goddesses, aliens, dragons, Earth-rise on alien worlds, and Suns in artificial spaceships…

What I long for is to draw with pencils, on paper and paint with brushes and colours – get it messy and wait for those terrifying mistakes which first ruin but then vastly change and make the whole work better than planned. Yes Serendipity!

For all most 2 years I have had a dedicated website  (Art of Mani) set up for my various `new’ art works..   That’s works I had created since 1985 – from the point of my arrival in England – first english comic books I created, covers for teen fictions, fantasy & visionary arts, masks, props, sculptures made of paper and even my own hair!

“Some pieces of work take literally years from start to finish- not because they are very large, but because the creative act is a force that has its own cycle, and we can never really predict it”  I say in the Profile section of my Art website.

“When inspiration hits, I do quick drawings, doodles or sketches on note books- sometimes any piece of paper I can find! At some point I then sit down to draw them out / flesh them out in detail. (after  many cups of coffees, television programs that just happen to be most interesting as they have never been before!). Once this is done (the agonising process of primal fire that just will not stop till it’s energy has been spent!), I put the work away- and this is where the `years’ might come in!  And one day when the mood and circumstances take me, I take it out of some long forgotten folder and (after more cups of coffee) start painting! Of course once the painting starts, I become utterly involved, irritated by interruptions of having to eat, drink and sleep..  till the work is done. Occasionally mistakes happen, water spills, (worse- coffee spills!)  (even worse, I accidentally rinse my paint brushes in the coffee cup!) But the joy has always been in correcting the mistakes and finding that the finished painting turned out far better than planned! Serendipity?!! “

This is all very well, talking about what I wrote in my Art website, but why have I not given any serious attention …to that website or even my art works? .

I don’t know why..

Actually I do.  It’s my writing..  it takes, uses and drains almost all of my creative times, and so the Artist in me never has enough energy to stand, stare and pick up a pencil and paper..and be lost in those imaginary worlds within made manifest on paper.

I keep telling myself – that when I have written all the things I have to write out of my system (!), I’ll stop, and get to my art..and give the rest of my life to art!

But what if those days never come?

I realise suddenly, the Artist and writer in me must co-exist, just as the Scientist & Magician in me exist together – switching from one to another. After all, there’s plenty of space in my mind, for such sub-personalities 🙂

-Mani

 

 

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