Welcome to the 5th edition of The Pulse -- The State of the Art -- a survey in words and pictures of the online artist community. The Pulse is a collaborative project that aims to introduce you to new artists, help you get to know familiar faces even more, and allow you access into the creative hearts and minds of a very talented crew of individuals. More than 130 artists have answered a series of questions which make up The Pulse. Their responses will be presented in a series of online posts which will run every Sunday.
Style File and Techniques & Tools were the first two projects posted and links to all 23 posts can be found on the sidebar of my blog. The third project, Master Class, continues now...
Participants were asked : 'If you could take a class from one artist from anytime in history, including the present, who would it be and why?'
(Images and links have been added by The Altered Page)
Chapter 3: Jesse Reno
Quite a few of the participants chose artists from the present time, including many who are in our community and who currently do in fact offer workshops. Jesse Reno was one of the choices most frequently picked.
"I would LOVE to go to a 5 day workshop with Jesse Reno in Mexico" said Jodi Ohl. "His work is extreme, intuitive, richly layered and contemporary. All things I hope my work is starting to become as I grow as an artist. I am looking for a benefactor, collector, or overall dream maker to help me get my wish!"
This was echoed by Patti Edmon who said "I believe my life would change if I had a chance to participate in Jesse Reno's workshop, preferably in Mexico. Jesse Reno, an 'outsider artist' based in Portland, OR, is totally different from me in most every way - life story, style of work, life style. But after watching his creative process I believe he defines artistic freedom, which is compelling albeit elusive."
Sharmon Davidson adds "I had to think about this one for a long time, but ultimately I decided that the artist who best exemplifies what's missing from my work is Jesse Reno. My goal for some time now has been to achieve that sense of childlike freedom - the sheer joy of mark-making that's so evident in his work. Picasso said it took him a whole lifetime to learn to draw like a child, and I think Jesse Reno clearly has mastered that."
Marcia Beckett said "I admire Jesse Reno's free style of painting. I have seen videos of him painting, but would love to watch him in person."
I shared with Jesse that he was among those artists selected and that people were very passionate about and fascinated by his style. He was kind enough to answer a set of questions that I had for him and share his thoughts about his work, his workshops, and himself.
Q: A number of people who said that they would choose you to be the artist they would want to take a class with used words such as free, freedom, freestyle, intuitive, and joyful to describe your style. Can you speak to this and describe how this sense of freedom developed?
A: my entire process is based on trying things that should work, the idea of destroying to let a piece be reborn, creating from abstractions and random colors guided by intention over direction. searching for meaning and visions in abstraction. changing direction when something feels no longer potent. choosing on feeling as much as visual aspects. not stop till you find meaning and a story that develops from the choices and decision you make throughout the creative process. noting your thoughts. and changing direction when they are no longer relevant. the idea of finding beauty in your mistakes rather than stress. it's about how and why you paint more than what. what should come from how and why.
if you search for truth and have a meaningful engagement you will create something alive with purpose. this has always been the basis of my process. the evolution has been moving further and further towards finding a deeper connection and story within this act that is part clairvoyance, part magic, part learning, part painting, part understanding as well as an explanation of self growth and purpose.
Q: Is there a dream workshop that you would give if time/money/location/materials were unlimited?
A: i'd love to teach a workshop somewhere near or among ancient ruins, relics, etc. maybe on site of an archaeological location or maybe a workshop with day trips to the natural history museum or other anthropological museum. this is my biggest inspiration and connection within the art i create so it would be nice to draw a firm connection to that for students for inspirational and explanatory purposes. it is also my dream to exhibit in an environment like this or alongside contemporary native aboriginal artisans.
Q: How would you answer the same question...what artist (past or present) would you want to take a class with?
A: i'm not so interested in classes as i am very content with my path passion and creations. i would love to collaborate and create with the person who encouraged me to paint in the first place - chris giordani. his process and ideals are very similar in his work, his ethic and ideas, tons of emotion and expression in his work. when i first started painting we would collaborate or work in the same space 3x a week for a good year. the energy was just tops. it's not that i feel there's nothing to learn i just feel that inward is the direction of truth and personal growth. this is what i teach in my workshops and this is what i seek and at this point i don't really want to be distracted from my current path. as i'm chasing it like a fever everyday.
To learn more about Jesse, you can visit his website or blog. You can watch him create (a treat if you never have) here.
Thanks for taking the time Jesse to share these thoughts with the readers of The Altered Page.