Art is the time and place when you let your imagination fly. It's when you are so completely entranced in your work that you are able to let go of any inhibitions, restrictions or self-criticism.
Art happens when the piece you're working on takes over. Time passes unmarked. Your creation flows from your hands as if they're guided by an outside force but it's really an inner force that is suppressed and ignored most of the time. Making art is like when you were a kid and you played and played outside until your mom had to call you in from the dark --and you didn't even realize it was dark!
Art happens when you can sit in a class for eight hours, through lunch, so focused on your project that you're surprised to hear the class is ending in fifteen minutes. I know I've created a great piece of art when I am so excited by it that I want to take it to my book club, or my lunch date or my son's classroom just for the opportunity to show it to anyone who will look.
Art is the physical expression of my soul on display so others can see it and, hopefully, connect with it.
The photos I've included are of a sketchbook I created in Michael DeMeng's "Cold Blooded Journal" class that I took at Art Is You Petaluma in 2011.
**Artists are invited to submit a short essay on what “Art is…” to them and include 4-6 images of their work plus links to their website and blogs.