Jennifer Keeney-Bleeg is a contemporary artist and freelance writer living in Bristol, England. This is her third installment in a four-part series as Artist Strong’s Artist in Residence.
You can view more of her art on Instagram or Facebook @jkbleeg. Visit her website at jkbleeg.com and join her monthly mailing list to be the first to get access to new releases of art.
Like pretty much all artists I know, I appreciate a lot of different kinds of art and have dabbled in many forms of it. Perhaps as a result of that, I have sometimes struggled to get clarity about the kind of art I want to put out into the world.
I’m also a bit of a people-pleaser (hopefully a recovering one) and when determining where to focus my work, I have put more weight on external sources of validation than I should – whether it came in the form of a positive note from a gallery manager or a supportive comment on social media from someone I respect. Getting clarity about my own vision is an ongoing challenge for me, particularly as I learn new skills and evolve as an artist.
I try to regularly evaluate what I like about my work and what I’d like to elevate within it. I also keep – and add to – a look book of art images that I find moving in some way. If I feel repeatedly drawn to a certain artist’s work, or even to a color or texture or use of line, I try to experiment with it and see where it might help my own work develop.
Two books are inspiring me at the moment — Painting Abstract Landscapes, by Gareth Edwards and Kate Reeve-Edwards.; and Life Force: A painter’s response to the nature poetry of Ted Hughes, by Louise Fletcher (below).
Every month, 1-3 artists show up in our Artist Strong community to share their artistic process, journey, explorations with us over the course of a month.
The goal is to normalize the MANY, VARIED experiences of being an artist.
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