Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Layers

Anyone who has taken an art class will tell you the key to painting is not being able to draw a perfect figure and color it in. The trick is to layer the paint, fat over lean, building up the colors, filling in the negative space, until the subject appears in the light as if by magic. The same technique applies to writing. Words are the medium, layered and given rhythm, creating an atmosphere, a negative space which defines the subject. As in life, what is implied is as important to understanding the whole as what is obvious.

I have been busy convincing myself to write. Actually, I write all of the time, but I mean to give a story a go. The process of taking myself seriously has never been easy for me. I am mistress of the second guess. Like water, I carve my way, eventually shaping my world to my preferences, but I always take the path of least resistance. I barely resemble the person I know I could be. I am not talking about adding up accomplishments or tallying victories with a triumphant chalk mark. I am wondering why I have limitless faith in other people yet so very little in myself.

During a walk last night, as the sun set behind the mountain, and the first cool breezes of Autumn whistled in the elms, a doe sprang from the woods. She landed less than twenty feet from me, paused to size me up, then walked across the road, down the hill, to the river. At first I didn't see the doe, but the space the gray street, green grass, and golden lamp light formed around her. While my eyes saw the negative, my mind interpreted the form, then my whole being knew the doe was there. I wonder if it was the same for her.

9 comments:

Darla said...

Interesting and deep.

lubasha said...

This is such a nice blog- I'm so glad I found it. I enjoy photography, art and writing myself, but hardly take the time to do any of those. By the way, you write beautifully.

jessicrum said...

You do write beautifully. I enjoy your musings on the similarities between art and writing. I'm sure that are a lot of them.

amandajean said...

you do write so beautifully, and you should definitely give it a shot!!!

the Lady said...

Mmmm.....

I'd be interested to read what you write. The Yarn Harlot actually just posted a bit on what it means to write a book. Some food for thought there.

elizabeth said...

What a wonderful moment in time! Thank you for sharing it - I felt like I was there with you. Which is the mark of a good writer, you know. :o)

Carmen said...

Good luck!

Mom said...

Oh my darling daughter, you really should listen to your Mother. I've said for years now that you have an amazing talent for putting pen to paper and thoughts to words. Go for it, my dear. All you have to loose is time, and please do it now rather than later. I want to be around when you are discovered!

Left-Handed Housewife said...

Write. Do it. Write the story. Write it without second guessing; you can burn the first draft later. Write it, then revise it a hundred times. You're already a writer. Take it seriously. Use the gift.

Frances