I’m writing blogs again at Sumieblog.com, after several years hiatus. This time the blog will probably not be so much about art and faith, but a more intimate and personal look at art.
I have been creating art for a very long time starting with preschool childhood memories that certainly precede any thought of art as a career in adulthood. Even now I don’t think of myself as a professional artist. Now that I’ve reached an age (77 years, born 1942) when most would consider ‘near death,’ I think it’s a good time to reflect on this personality profile called the ‘Artistic Temperament.” Did you know it’s a genuine medical category with strong traits that border on a mental illness?
“artistic temperament. A personality profile well described in writers, artists and composers which in the extreme case borders on mental illness. Artists may suffer major depression, bipolar moods disorder or cyclothymia (the latter two of which are thought to be 10-20 times more common among artists),and may commit suicide (18 time more common in those with artistic temperaments). Episodes of hypomania may form the ‘substrate’ for creative bursts.” –Segen’s Medical Dictionary c2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved ( citation from Google search).
After years of painting realistically, most recently as a sumi-e artist, I am considering going into the direction of abstract expressionism. It’s an unexplored field as my tendency is to paint what I see. Being trained as a librarian (specialty in medical/hospital work), my first attempt to understand this new prompting is to check on that artistic method. I had one very good friend, Lenore McLoughlin, who was an abstract expressionist acrylic artist. In some ways I think my library career saved me from veering towards the more extreme forms of mental illness, as art should have been my natural career direction.
At age 5 I won my first art award in Kindergarten. At age 16, Mr. James Kimura, my high school art teacher, nominated me to attend a Saturday gifted student arts program for promising artists at the Honolulu Academy of Arts. Over these many years, I’ve met many types of artists and creatives and also explored many kinds of art including fine arts and graphic or commercial art. This is about artists and me. This topic will be written as a series of blogs rather than as a single one. Today is my introduction. Come join me, especially if you are an artist or think you have an artistic temperament.