Naked We Stand

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oil painting of man standing in water by Cheyenne MacMasters 2014

Pluto Risen
by Cheyenne MacMasters

Being female, I suppose it is natural that my art brings out the male animus, while men are often enthralled with their female anima spirit. Just a thought.  I am still in the emerging state of becoming the artist I didn’t feel worthy of being. Seems to be the theme that comes forth onto my canvas. You’ll see it in my paintings EmergingBorder Crossing, Of the Nefertiti, and most recently, Pluto Rising. It’s like writing down your dreams, you begin to see a pattern, a story-line that knits your life together. And, like dreams, we are often exposed naked to the world.

It isn’t easy to present ourselves to scrutiny. Before we get out the door we have to pass our own critical analysis that challenges and denies our readiness to be seen in public. There is a stage of development in every one of my paintings, that I call failure. It comes fairly quickly: first the prepping of canvas, then the sketch of paint, and then the failure.  After that, it’s a game of perseverance, wondering if I’m going to achieve anything but the exercise of learning to paint. Then, in the midst of that feeling of defeat, the Muses have begun to shape a reality at the tip of my brush. Painting becomes an archeological dig to bring forth the image that is beginning to emerge into being. I can feel the Muses nudging my brush into action as they swirl around me. We dance, we grin, we breathe a sigh of delight, “Congratulations, it’s a painting.”

12″x24″ oil painting by Cheyenne MacMasters

Available from Csambri Studios

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8 responses »

  1. Hearing you get inside the process, through failure and perseverance, I feel the human experience but also beyond to the point where we meet the mystery, in your paintings yet also in anything we do! Love the depth and layers your images point to!

    • It truly is a mystery to be able to trust the flow and discover ourselves along the way. Must be like that for you doing improv, when you have to respond to a situation that didn’t exist before now. I still cherish those moments.

  2. Very interesting, your process. Like writing a poem– jot down a bunch of images and words– seems a mess– let it simmer and then work on it, hone it till it makes sense hopefully. Your art is wonderful. I send my hearty encouragement as well.

    • Your encouragement is greatly appreciated! I find the process of simmering to be fundamental to rounding up the mess of words or trying to make oils simulate flesh. And, of course, trust that the poem will take flight and the image will land on its feet.

    • The faces go through several phases and finally seem to settle into androgyny. Thank you for your perceptive eye, Hariod. I’m working on a 3’x5′ version of this image now and am very curious to see what face will be revealed.

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