|9x6 pastel and watercolor|
One of the rules for my memory game is absolutely no cameras can be with me.... too tempting. Only a small notebook or sketch book. I also am now making myself wait for at least 12 hours before I can begin painting. I keep tightening the rules. heh.
John Carlson has an excellent chapter on "Painting from Memory" in his Carlson's Guide to Landscape Painting. I think you will find this thought very interesting. Carlson says,
"I am inclined to believe that all creative work is founded upon our earliest impressions, the time when the eye looked with unclouded freshness and candor upon the world! These impressions (rejecting nothing, passing judgement on nothing, accepting all), after ripening or mellowing with time into a subconscious treasure trove, form the principal wells or founts of inspiration for the grown man (or grown woman). From these we select. We see something that stirs our soul with creative desire, because we recognize or remember subconsciously an old experience.
It is because of this that we may be said to paint or write, or act what we ourselves are in every movement and every thought. What we are is not the result of present experience alone, but the aggregate past. In other words, we see and feel certain things today because we have previously seen them in our most impressionable years. We add this to our present "facility" and organizing faculty, which can only be acquired in mature years. Our visions take form, gathering volume as they move, and they mould themselves, sometimes sublimely, into present expression. The artist himself is often surprised at he finished work of art. He can not tell "how it happened" nor could he repeat the feat at someone's bidding.
It is because the memory revives the dormant and stimulates action, that painting from memory is here so urgently advocated. In painting, the memory will be discovered to be very meagre at first. Difficulty will be found at retaining anything. But with practice the practice will be surprisingly strengthened, not as a mere camera lens, but as a power in discerning the significant factors behind common place experiences.
....As we progress, our work becomes more intensely absorbing. We almost live in a world apart. In memory work we relive our experiences and the effect they have produced on us.
So what do you think of that idea?