The artist fights feverishly..longing to break through, unaware of what is calling to one from beyond. The artist presses on. Currents surge through the spirit at the most unsuspecting of times. Unknowing what to do, the artist begins to work, clueless as to where this compelling event might lead.

Struggles often surface when there is a deep call to create. A metal block, is what some may call it, others might say, an atmospheric change. Passion and enthusiasm in these times is outweighed. A spiritual force seems to beckon, but sometimes it is uncertain from whither it came. Unmistaken, we know a work wants to be made; we know there is much that we have to say. We work as forces of nature, pushing aside the things which plague us, until at last, we grow to understand those things. Often, it is after a great works process and development that we are truly capable to see.

In times most uncertain, with vision not yet seen, I’ve begun a work unknowing what it could truly be. In the depths of clouded sight-lines I’ve set goals I felt I could not reach. Stepping out on faith, I trust my instinct. In my life faith and instinct guide me, never one without the other. As an artist, I think it rather impossible to accomplish anything without these two present.

As we wander through life, we experience sudden flashes. If not immediately captured, we hope and pray that they revisit us. In these awakened moments, I pen down or with oil paint, brush notations. For what purpose I rarely know, until they whisper back to me. Within the deepest thoughts of darkness, logic calls out to me. I attempt to silence voices that say things like, “You can’t, you never will.” At the next flash of strength or moment likened to genius, I stop, fold shutter ‘gainst the darkness and say, “But I already have and I will again.”

In each artist’s walk there is a process. Within the artist, there is a point of depth beneath a perplexing surface. Spiritual beings push the bounds of mechanical things. Through our work we walk, contemplating, soul searching with desire to interpret what we see. These flashes find us and command us to be, when we have seemingly forgotten how to do anything, even breathe.

—Art is Life Expressed— Sarah West —



-previously published via The Citizen of East Alabama