This past week, I finished up my Party Animal series, a series of 11 simple acrylic paintings of animals with various party hats, noise makers and balloons. And, a bit to my surprise, this series became what I can only describe as a fan favorite.
It is well known that we are all our own worst critics (except for those sparkling few who have dodged that particular bullet of thought). One of the critiques my inner (jerk) voice has mentioned a number of times is that what I’m creating doesn’t have enough depth, and that in the big picture of things, what I’m doing, well it straight up doesn’t matter. And, I’ll admit, my artistic side usually focuses on (what some could say) is lighter matters. It not only wants, but needs, to create additional happiness in the world.
To create something that gives someone a smile is just as valuable as making work that creates a sense of connection (the other goal I have) or to make someone awe at my skills (not a goal). My art does not exist in a vacuum, where I create for just myself and my inspiration. No, no, my art exists in the world with other people, and I like it that way. I like to see responses. I like to know my art is sharing a little positivity. I like celebrating joy!
So, to my inner critic, I say: Art that is simply good fun has great value. I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen this world be a bit rough on all of us, and don’t we all deserve to surround ourselves with things that make us smile? (Yes! The answer is YES! A thousand times!)
When I was working on the party animals, there was one main criteria for bringing the animal to life. Did the thought of it in a party hat, or carrying way too many balloons, or making a lot of noise with those funny horns make me smile. Like truly, make me feel a little giggle or childish, mischievous glee. If the answer was yes, then I made it, and loved every (almost) minute of it.