Saturday, August 8, 2009

Artist Thoughts about the art of Sumi-e

As an artist, for me, ink painting is a meditation and a creative process. I concentrate on trying to capture spirit as the ink is transferred to the paper with the stroke of the brush. The brush is pushed across the surface of the paper quickly. If your intention is correct, the object in the picture seems to 'breathe and take on life'. This unseen yet felt breath begins to fill the page with spirit just as it does in all of nature which surrounds us. The special power of the painted form shines and appears through the ink and the white page. The white space surrounding the painted form becomes as important as the object itself. The ink painting represents soul, spirit, elegance, and beauty all at the same time  in concert.  Sumi-e exemplifies the concept of 'Less is More.

'Kokoro tadashikereba sunawachi fude tadashi'.
If your mind is correct, the brush will be correct.

The example of an ink painting that I have created and included above is called Branch of Persimmon.
Expressed in words by my Haiku:
" juicy ripe, branch of persimmon, gently live."
- Casey Shannon

Sumi-e is closely related to the Japanese haiku. Haiku is minimalist writing and Sumi-e is minimalist painting. They naturally support one another and are often studied in tandom.

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