Thursday, March 6, 2014

Buddha Pages

                          Being a seller on etsy requires more than talent, creativity and passion.  It is a very competitive marketplace where one must consider most choices with asute business sense.  Because I have been moving away from my life as a business owner and back into the studio, I often struggle with the double edge sword of self employment.  The work is hard, and I still have to make choices that are smart from a business mindset,as well as inspiring to my artistic mindset.  Creating an affordable art piece that is unique, one of a kind and inspiring to the viewer is a challenge, but one I am beginning to enjoy as an important part of my artistic journey.

The Buddha pages are a new idea I brought to my etsy page as a way to combine the lessons I have learned from creating products that sell well on etsy with the projects that are on my table and close to my heart.  I have been sketching flowers, animals and images derived from my studies of Medieval art this winter as preparatory and preliminary work for my large paintings.  The sketches at times develop into finished pieces in their own right.  I offer prints of many of my drawings and paintings, but I wanted to come up with something more.  When I'm at work on a painting I so often rely on chance, or what at times feels like serendipity, to bring the meaning of an image into focus.  
Combining the images from my sketchbooks with pages from a vintage book is not a completely original idea.  Artists print on found paper, especially in the world of assemblage.  The personal significance for me is the particular book I chose.  I have spent many hours sifting through old books since my father passed away three years ago.  He was a voracious reader, and he loved to share everything he learned from his books.  Many of my memories of family vacations at our northwoods cabin getaway are of my father either reading on his recliner or asleep with a book on his chest.  He was so happy with his books.  I don't read nearly as much as my dad, but I do love books and I have had a keen interest in Buddhism in the past year, reading everything I can get my hands on.  So, going through my dad's collection, the text on the Buddha's life, "Buddha and the Gospel of Buddhism" 1969, has been the perfect choice for a backdrop for my sketches and studies.   I love to layer an image full of symbolic meaning with a page that somehow relates to the image, inviting further contemplation.  When I look at them now I see them as small versions of the layering process I meticulously work through in my multi media painted works.


I invite readers to check out the Buddha pages on etsy.  Each one has a special meaning that I begin to explain in the listings, leaving the rest of the discovery to each viewer.  At the top of this page is a link to etsy, it will take you to the shop: Dawn Patel Art, and the Buddha page section can be easily found there.  

Beneath the Snow
I would love to hear what meanings you discover in these small and precious pages.

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