Charles Bradley's Fine Art <meta name="description" content="A complete collection of Charles Bradley's original Abstract and Geometric Gouache Paintings and Silkscreen Prints with Spiritual and Astronomical Themes from 1973 to 2015">
Natural Selection 1

The above image is a recent "creation" which was made possible due to
the reading of a book. The discussion which follows is about the book
and may explain a bit about how this collage came to be.

Last month a friend referred me back to a book I had read several
years ago.  It is called "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron.  It is
both a book and a course in "discovering and recovering one's creative
self." It is a 3-month course which, by its very nature, brings one
very close to the core issues for how it is that artists can and do
become "blocked" with their art.  It is an independent task although
people do band together to do "The Artist's Way" individually in a
group.  I've chosen to do the course alone.  At this writing, I am
into the 4th week.

There are many tasks yet there are two main focal-point exercises one
(hopefully) does every day and once every week respectively.  The
first is called "morning pages." The other is called "the artist
date." The morning pages involve writing (in long hand) three full
pages immediately after waking up.  The intent is not to have the
writing be good writing -- or bad writing.  It is simply a
train-of-thought exercise which often may seem pointless or
disconnected.  It may at other times evoke highly connected thoughts,
dreams, emotions.  The pages can be quite intelligent or even negative
and confusing.  There is no right or wrong way to do morning pages. 
The point is to DO them and not to ever stop doing them.  They are a
place to rest, whine, vent, hope, try.  The point is that they evoke a
truer sense of one's creative self.  The interesting aspect in this is
that this truer (often more child-like) sense of self evolves "on its
own" and, as Julia Cameron believes, this is a creative process which
"comes from" God.  At no time should one ever READ their own morning
pages.  She suggests they be saved in a large envelop and never shown
to anyone.  The point is to write them and to experience them in real
time as they are written. They are therapy.  They evolve just as our
days and lives evolve.  Keeping the pen moving is important, too.  As
soon as we stop or begin to think ABOUT what we did or did not write
-- or about what we should or shouldn't have done or said, then the
OTHER SELF comes in to disturb the creative self.  This is the
"blocking" self -- the "Critic" as she calls it.

The other exercise -- the "artist date" is simply that:  A date.  Yet,
we do not go out with anyone.  We take ourselves out on a date.  We do
this once a week AS IF we were taking our lover or best friend out. 
We treat them to things, to images, to places, to sounds, sights,
smells, beauty, art.  She calls it "filling the well." In doing these
artist dates, we get a sense of what we can so easily miss if we
literally do not stop to smell the roses.  One is not ever supposed to
discuss their own artist dates with others either.  This is a very
personal experience to be shared only with one's own inner artist. 
For this reason, I cannot discuss my own.  What I will say however
(only here) is that the above image was "the result" of my first
artist date.

Recently, and not unrelated to the above discussion, I have been
interested in returning to an art form first begun in 1973: 
Silkscreen printing -- specifically photo-silkscreen printing.  From
time to time I may soon update my home page with what may very well be
more creative "results" of artist dates.  Currently though, I have
begun a new piece of work which I would like eventually to post here
IN PLACE OF artist date creations.  So far, the process is working out
well.  It is quite involved and technically quite interesting in terms
of the process itself.  Eventually I hope to share this following a
few more of these "other" creations.  It is my hope to show and sell
these silkscreens in 2005.  Again, the above image is not a
silkscreen.  It is a collage.  I hope to show some new limited edition
prints in about a month or so.

------------ Charles, 9/22/04