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 Emerging, Border 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
by Cheyenne MacMasters
I’ve been taking an e-course: “Starving” to Successful, written and taught by Jason Horejs of Xanadu Gallery in Scottsdale, Arizona. “Upgrade your materials” “produce more” “have an identifiable style” all this is what I’m hungry to know. The course has given me the tools and confidence to reach out and receive grants from several sources. You can’t imagine how grounded I feel to be given funding for upgrading my materials and the trust to work on a project that will bring me into international waters. I highly recommend Horejs’ book and e-course for providing a path through the maze that leads from your studio into the world.
So far, the emphasis has been on the fundamentals of our craft, but now, the assignment is to write our biographies and make a statement as to what our art is about. The artist must translate into words what the heck they’ve been doing, and why they are so captivated by what they are doing. You can read my new painter’s biography on my About page.
What influences shape an artist? Mixing colors as a child? Encountering Monet’s brushstrokes in person? Sensing the Muses guiding one’s attention? I used to dream of Pluto, a shadow figure sitting in an underground pool in a dark cavern. An intensely powerful presence whom I felt before I saw. As calm as a sheathed knife. I felt quite brave in his presence, or was it the need to be brave?
For no particular reason, I remembered the other day that I have Pluto rising in my astrological chart. And then it occurred to me, that’s the perfect name for my current painting. Ah ha…. Yet why, so many years later, has Pluto risen out of the pool? Late risers, those nether planets. Yet, has the sleeping hero, hidden away for centuries in his cave, really been all about bringing ourselves to light?
12″x24″ oil painting, “Pluto Rising” by Cheyenne MacMasters
available from Csambri Studios