Posts Tagged ‘Enough’

On Being an Artist – Part 2

Posted on: August 17th, 2016 by jmbroekman 6 Comments
The beginning of a new book of collages

Thoughts on being an artist in this always-connected-digital world

This is a continuation of the most recent post in which I lamented that being an artist isn’t always as easy at it looks. Has being an artist become even more complicated in this always-connected-digital universe?

You could argue that the digital age makes being an artist easier, rather than more difficult. There are so many ways to reach your audience. Yet, there is something about putting work “out there” whether here on this blog, on FaceBook, or Instragram, that keeps a questioning eye peering over my shoulder. For those of us who lean sharply toward the side of self-doubt, this social media landscape often feeds our worst internal demons. I almost always hesitate before hitting the “post” button, questioning myself and my motivation, before sending whatever it is out into cyberspace. Are you sure that’s ready for prime time?

I am told, however, that as an artist not connecting is not an option. And if there is one lesson that being an artist teaches, it’s that you have to look fear right in the eye, and do whatever it is anyway. So in I jump with both feet and allow the crazy current to carry me where it will. On the plus side, I’ve gotten a ton of positive feedback, and discovered a mess of really talented and inspiring artists out there. In the end, I like being able to stay in touch and share my work with all of you, near and far.

On being an artist – and finding time to disconnect

Courageous acts as an artist also include sending out applications (for grants, shows and residencies). As my grandmother always said “No you’ve got, yes you can get“, which I wrote about here. With that in mind, I applied for a residency at the Heliker-Lahotan Foundation. To my great delight, they invited me to spend September on Great Cranberry Island!

I am looking forward to working with abandon; letting my curiosity take me where it will, without expectation of what the work should be; slowing way down to live inside the work, and giving that little voice of doubt over my shoulder a vacation. This time away, I am confident, will propel my work forward for many years to come. Can you tell how excited I am about this opportunity?

Summer at it’s best

Posted on: August 12th, 2015 by jmbroekman No Comments

Ahhhhh Summer

The season that flees too fast, making us savor every moment of it. Last week we went “upta camp” as they say in these parts. It was a little piece of heaven on earth. Exploring in kayaks, swimming, and wandering around the woods completely unplugged – no cell phone, no computer, no screens; and camping lanterns for light when the sun went down. I was happily reintroduced to a part of myself that had gone missing for a while.

When we got home, I decided to try my hand at fermenting some vegetables: cucumbers, cabbage, carrots and kohlrabi. The jars are bubbling as I understand they should, and cucumbers are starting to smell just like pickles! Looking forward to biting into that first one, and feeling oh so grateful for all this season brings.



Posted on: January 14th, 2013 by jmbroekman No Comments

Day 8 (left); and Day 9 (right)

0107-230high01-08-13: Day 7

I have been walking in the woods in the morning and noticing the myriad shades of grey – more than 50 (and no, I have not read that book; nor am I planning to). The color of the winter sky – both early in the morning and late in the afternoon is forever intriguing and filling my thoughts as I am in the studio.

01.12.13 – Day 13


Show up. Pay attention. Suspend judgement. Let go of the outcome.


Posted on: November 15th, 2012 by jmbroekman 2 Comments

Enough is Enough

In Italy you often hear parents admonishing their children with a rather loud BASTA. At our house, growing up, it wasn’t so loud, but the words held the same intensity: That’s ENOUGH. And when you heard those words come out of my mother’s mouth, you knew she meant it.

do you
when is,
enough is enough?

When I left the studio last night, I put this little 8.25″ x 5″ painting on the wall, and thought “that’s enough for today; I’ll attack it again tomorrow”. But seeing it again this morning with fresh eyes, I wondered whether maybe enough was really enough.