Happy Accident

Jan 9, 2016 | Artwork, Inspiration

On why I want lots of happy accident in 2016: With the arrival of the new year, I decided to take a look through some of my older work that I brought with me when I moved from Manhattan to Rome. After one of the lengthier pauses I’ve ever taken from painting on a regular basis, it’s been a little trickier getting back into a rhythm with it than I had expected. I knew that to find that rhythm again, I needed to spend some time with the paintings and drawings I made during a more productive period, when I wasn’t overthinking and just dove into one painting after another. While looking through old portfolios, two pieces struck me the most. Technically I suppose they classify more as some kind of improvised monotypes than paintings, but to me they are first and foremost experiments. That’s why I love them. They reminded me that what has always fascinated me about the creative process isn’t necessarily achieving a predetermined outcome, but the different form and appearance something takes often on along the way to becoming complete. It’s the unexpected elements that come together and create something totally unique I find most intriguing.

In life and in the studio, when things take a new turn or when time reveals a surprising outcome, that’s often when things get interesting. I’ve always referred to this as happy accident. Happy accident isn’t just accident, though: it is the result of a concerted effort to build, create, or pursue something. While it isn’t part of the original plan, it can’t happen where there is no plan made or action taken. Often it leads us somewhere new and perhaps even better than where we thought we wanted to go. So in lieu of resolutions, because I’ve not sure I believe in those ( more on that next January perhaps), what I want to invite into my life in 2016 is lots of happy accident through painting and drawing much more and jumping in instead of holding back.


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