I've written about him and his painting "Himself" and quotes before--see earlier posts. I keep a copy in the car, so when I'm waiting on someone, I can pick it up and read, and be inspired, and underline more. Soon, the whole book will be underlined.
K. Lawson Gilbert, poet-friend, and all other artists, you want this book. It will inspire poetry. It is in paperback, but if you want a hardcover, go to abe.com--a consortium of used bookstores and you can find a hardcover with photographs, cheap Mine is hardcover,fifth edition, 1939. He was an oil painter, and his book is a selection of thoughts, letters, etc., on art, before he died in 1929. The first editor wrote of his death: "...brought to an end a life of uncontaminated devotion to art." I like it because you can pick it up and turn to any page, and find something that applies to me and what I attempt,whether in writing, painting, photography, or... .
Today I read these lines, now underlined and starred in the margin: "Don't try to paint good landscapes. Try to paint canvasses that will show how interesting landscape looks to you--your pleasure in the thing."
Then I thought of the "cabin view" I painted two days ago, and thought, "That's what's wrong with it. I was trying to paint a good landscape...not what I feel. I know mountains, but I didn't paint them." He also wrote, "It is to be rendered according to its nature, not to be copied."
That's what was wrong with my first painting...I was "copying" a photograph, not painting its nature. I know mountains--spiritually, personally, visually, vicersaly--but I was not painting their nature. Nor was I painting the spirit of the clouds. I was "copying.".
Accordingly, here's the painting I did tonight, referring briefly to the previous and more to what was inside me. Here I paint the nature of the mountain and the clouds. See how much better it is than the original, copied below.