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Saturday, August 17, 2013

Why Traveling is Good for an Artist

'Taking the Back Roads'            11x14              pastel         ©Karen Margulis
purchase this painting here $165
 "Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind."  Seneca

I am in trip planning mode. In another life I must have been a travel agent. I love planning trips as much as taking them. Usually I start planning my next trip on my way home from the current trip.  I have always loved to travel. When our kids were younger we would take three weeks each summer to explore the National Parks. That was wonderful.

But now that I paint Travel takes on a  new dimension. I am not just a tourist seeing the 'must see' sights. I see every place with fresh eyes. Even the ordinary sights become extraordinary when discovered on a trip.  Traveling makes you more aware of your surroundings. All of your senses become more acute. You notice more. Even if you  choose not to paint on a trip you are absorbing it all. It enriches you. Let me give you an example: Today's painting is from a photo I took on a road trip to Wyoming. We took the backroad one morning and came across this pasture.

reference photo...somewhere in Kansas

We pulled over to take photos. It was peaceful and the morning light was so soft and beautiful.  If we were at home we might have zipped pass this place, too busy with life to notice. But on a trip we were relaxed and in tune. Our cameras ever ready for the next best shot. We noticed the ordinary.

And even now, three years later I can look at the photo and recall how I felt at our discovery. The sights, sounds and smells. Those heightened senses stayed with me.
Yes I can certainly be more aware of my surroundings at home but there is something about travel that sends a signal to my brain that it is time to wake up and soak it all in.

What's in the works for the coming year?  NJ, Pawleys Island, Caribbean cruise, and in 2014 possibly Nantucket, Monhegan Island and a Fall trip somewhere to see Aspens. And of course several trips to Chicago to see my kids!

What's your next trip?

Today's painting:  Uart 600 paper with an alcohol wash with Terry Ludwig pastels, the Marsh Savage Southeast Landscape set.

1 comment:

angela j simpson said...

Lovely painting. No planned trips - but everyday is an adventure living in a new area!