Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Why Write an Art Blog? What's it all about?

Roses and Feathers, Annette Goings

A couple of years ago, in the middle of conversations, people would stop to ask, "Have you ever considered writing a blog." Those questions frequently occurred.  Admittedly, when talking about topics of interest, I become enthusiastic.

Morning Pears
Writing a blog was a new thought for me and something I had not considered. Knowing little about the subject I did a Google search to learn more. A blog is essentially a weblog, a digital magazine or an online diary.

Supplied with more information I began to contemplate a blog. My first thoughts were, me, write my thoughts for others? Pens, pencils and paper, Oh, My!! To be more technologically current, keyboard, internet, and blogger, Oh, my!! Open myself up to a much larger audience? An even bigger Oh My!

For awhile, I didn't give these suggestions much attention. However, as time went on, people consistently gave me this advice. I began to feel as if someone were trying to tell me something. Finally, I made the decision to investigate further and perhaps give it a go.

My reluctance with writing a blog had to do with my thoughts about writing. In high school, grammatically speaking, language structure, diagramming, nouns, and verbs confused me. They still do. I avoided writing whenever possible. It wasn't until after I was accepted to the University of Washington that I had to devote more time and energy to writing.

Lake Weir Sunset
Entering the UW, my plans were to major in Art. I was looking for a more traditional approach to an art education. Not finding what I was looking for, I switched majors to Political Science and considered a law degree. The course load was heavy and unbeknownst to me, I would begin to write full-time. Language structure aside, I soon learned it was more important to communicate a message.

Once I made the commitment to write a blog, there was much to  do and many technical issues to address. More important though was "what did I have to say?" One of the things on my to-do list was to rekindle my long unused writing skills. Hint: it's very easy to talk on and on about something versus writing about a topic in a meaningful way.

After more research, I learned most blogs have a theme, a purpose or a mission statement. There were many more questions asked than answered in the beginning. One primary question was what do I want to offer readers?  In the beginning, I didn't know what my message was nor what I wanted to address.

At the time, I wasn't quite sure of the answers to any of those questions. What I do know about myself, however, is, if I have to know everything before taking action it probably won't get started. Serendipity, spontaneity, mystery and miracles are also a part of the journey. Assembling the pieces as you go, sometimes works best for me. As you move forward, more pieces reveal themselves and things do fall into place. 

Pawleys Island On the Creek
While considering what to write, I looked to friends and colleagues for guidance on the technical aspects of starting a blog. Cecelia Campbell, an experienced blogger, lent me her assistance. Cece came to my home one day, and spent several hours holding my then non-techie, non-blogging hand, and helped assemble the first template for Living the Artful Life with Annette Goings. On October 28th, 2013, my first blog article was published. It's interesting to visit my first blogs and see the transition and changes that have taken place.

What is An Artful Life? What does it mean to you? To me, it's living a life that includes beauty on a daily basis. We see Portraits, Still Life's and Landscapes every day when we look into others faces, travel the roadways and decorate our homes.  

An artist is a translator of these images. When an artist paints an ocean scene, we see it afresh through their eyes and perhaps share some of the feelings the artist felt while painting. When we bring that painting into our home and hang it on the wall, we give that ocean scene a new meaning. 

Art is about connecting others to something that matters to them and people finding meaning in something beyond its ordinary significance. 

Purple Hydrangea
How does this translate into a personal diary or an online magazine? This past year I've shared places I've visited, updates from workshops, the work of other artist, and my artwork. The character of the blog is feeling more like an art journal.

Innumerable ideas roam around inside of me, almost to the point of being overwhelmed. Those ideas appear to come from the part of me that has so much to say, but the words can't flow onto the paper as quickly they can spill from my brain and voice.

Writing slows the thought process and requires me to think more concisely, to focus and select my words and thoughts with more care.  It's often said in painting make every stroke count.  In writing, the same is true, it's about making every word count.

What am I wanting to accomplish with my writing? - To make every word count, to connect with others through these articles, and to share what I love about the beauty of this world. There are endless possibilities we have to enrich our lives and create a more beautiful world together. This blog enables me to reach out to the world and do this.

What's coming next? At present my aim is to write articles of interest for artist and art lovers of all types. My hope is that something I write or share will inspire others to tap into their own creative, imaginative aspirations and bring that energy into their everyday activities.

What's my message?  What's my platform? Not sure yet. I just answered a question. In the meantime, I am exploring why this has and will continue to become an important part of my experience.

Life, learning, creating, inspiring others is supposed to be fun. Please join me on this journey of Living the Artful Life.

Thanks for joining me, and please continue to send me your comments. It's wonderful bringing this to you, and I've enjoyed receiving your emails and comments on the blog and Facebook. Also, if you like this article, please share it with your friends or on Facebook.

Artfully Yours,


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