Poetry For The Art

It only takes a moment for the words to stretch and find themselves snapping into place. They reach and converse until it all makes some sort of sense and there’s my expression. I found myself looking for poetry in everything. From places obvious, like lyrics to music and collections by E.E. Cummings, to the way I could explain how I felt at the moment or in the things people close to me did or said. Somehow after a year of writing a poem a day I see that the work I do with words often translates itself into my art work. It’s easy to work with a concept after I write a poem based on the idea. It helps to anchor me to the work and keeps me from losing interest in a piece.

There’s this one piece I have of a woman standing on her hands, her handholds a glass box with a gold pocket watch swinging inside, already broken, shooting these red arrows with her feet while chaos surrounds her and two towers rise before her with the words Wonderful Torment written on them. After I drew it out I felt automatically attached to the piece because every part of it meant something and words helped me connect myself to the situation my character was in. She was in a state of chaos while trying to keep her balance, and even living through her own arrows coming back to get her.

Being a teenager is living in this state of constant chaos all while trying to keep control of yourself and the choices you make, because in the end that’s what defines us. And some people turn to negative things to keep it all from making them fall off their hands, instead I choose art and poetry to keep me grounded. I’m expressing myself and finding new ways to show people a piece of myself, even if its a little bit confusing to someone who might not know me well. All the things we go through change us and stick themselves into the little crevice of who we are. Without the moment where I first picked up a pencil with the desire to draw, I wouldn’t have even thought to go to the school I go to, I wouldn’t have met all these people who have helped me learn about life and how things work and how giving up on something you want to do because its too hard is a ridiculous notion.

The one thing about art that I want to do but struggle with, is my self portraits. But who says I’m going to give up on it? No way! I’m going to struggle with it until I don’t anymore. I can get as frustrated with myself for messing up proportion, or getting the shading wrong in a certain spot of my oddly made face but in the end I’m always going to go back in and work until it feels right. I’ll use my mishaps as a learning experience, they’ll teach me patients and what it is to care about something enough to continue through it no matter what. It’s the thought that counts and the thought will always translate into one of the two mediums I use to express them.

Put the idea of giving up into perspective. What if the architect never finished his sketches? No building can be made. What if our English teachers decided to read half the book and test us on the whole thing? Everyone would fail! What if you didn’t write your college essay because the idea of it stumped you? Good luck getting into college! Everyday we all make a choice to continue with the things we get started and as an artist that is a quality that is needed in order to succeed. I refuse to let any of my ideas go to waste. This year I wrote a poem a day and so far I have a little over three hundred. Next year I think I’ll do a poem and a drawing to match it every day that way I know I won’t give up on it. Giving up gets us nowhere, so I’m going to do whatever it takes to stay focused and get past obstacles in order to survive as an artist. I’m keeping that one good quality about me and using it to my advantage.

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