Raw Painting

"If you want to explore, to move with your intuition, you must get used to not knowing where you are going. There is great freedom there.... Art is the place to not know."
from Life, Paint and Passion by Michele Cassou

Leap of Faith
Acrylic on 16x20 stretched canvas.
After reading this book, one of the things I have been trying to do since the summer is take at least a couple of days a week and just paint for the joy of painting! No worries about results, making 'art' or if it will sell or not. I just paint like a kid for the sheer joy of spreading colour across the canvas, instinctively following the brush, just being open to what arrives... I wait until no one is home, turn the music up really really loud and get at it! My initial goal for doing this was to find out how I paint... find my own way so to speak. My academic background is in creative writing and one of our assignments with the goal of 'finding your voice' was to just write for 2 pages a day, then put it away... no rereading, no editing for a month until you had some distance from the work. So I figured this might be a way of visually 'finding my marks.'
Although I have been using paint for years-- it has largely been a tool in my mixed media work as opposed to a process. I was hoping to eventually have a better understanding of what paint can do on its own without the prop of my collage and textured work. I was hoping to just become a better painter and maybe use it as a starting place for creating a new body of work. I am giving myself the space to paint and keep the 'critic' out of things for now. So I paint and then I put it away and I paint some more.
After years of thinking I didn't have my own style because I seem to need alot of variety in my day to day projects, I am starting to recognize my instinctive marks... More importantly, what I am finding is I love painting--- and I have been trying to get to painting daily. When my daughter was young, we used to play this song by Raffi for her. The lyrics went: "... all I really need is a song in my heart, food in my belly and love in my family..." Painting makes a song in my heart! I am hoping that some of the vitality and joy will translate and come through in my paintings.