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Learning to dance the slow waltz - part 2

Updated: Nov 17, 2021

Last week I wrote about (re-)learning the slow waltz in this current season of adjusting to early retirement.

Truth be told, the last time I danced the slow waltz for any length of time was probably on my wedding day almost 16 years ago… However, I do remember some of the basic lessons I learned in dance school as a teen.

The slow waltz was the first dance we were introduced to. There is no elaborate counting required, just a slow and steady 1 – 2 – 3, 1 – 2 – 3, 1 – 2 – 3, over and over again. There is no proper dance unless the sequence of three steps is completed.

A good slow waltz also requires a good posture and steady frame. The dance only flows when we are fully present in the moment rather than trying to anticipate a leading partner’s next steps, watching what other couples are doing or constantly looking at our feet.

Translated into my art practice, I have to master some basics: making art, promoting art and moving art. For me step 1 is the most fun: I love experimenting and seeing what emerges on the empty canvas, wooden board or paper over several weeks, months or even years.

There is now a lot of work in my studio that is either ready for sale or just needs some finishing touches - which means it is time to make the paintings available to a wider audience.

I am looking forward to participating in a local exhibition in the Liss Triangle Centre from 28th-31st October and later in the year, an exhibition in the Physics Garden in Petersfield.

I get so much inspiration from talking to other artists and to art lovers. I also enjoy the challenge of selecting pieces that I think might suit a particular exhibition space, from the grand space of a cathedral to more intimate spaces.

However, setting up my online shop has proved more tricky. I have stopped and started working on this part of the website, frustrated and confused at both the myriad of available options and the limitations of the software. As someone who loves things that are touchable and tangible, virtual reality can never replace physical reality.

Yet the internet also offers the chance to connect with so many people I would otherwise never meet. I am particularly grateful for the art tuition I have received over the internet throughout the pandemic and beyond.

In order to grow as a an artist I will need to instil some discipline and learn to do things that are not particularly enjoyable right now.

I need to learn being in the moment rather than anticipating all the next steps that might be required and getting distracted by what everyone else is doing.


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