Friday, January 3, 2014


"Back to the Drawing Board", #2 of 4

From The Studios of Garin Baker
Blog Post
January 3rd 2014
11:10 am


5 min gesture, charcoal on canson paper. 2013

Continuing from my first post on this subject, I thought I would try and express the long view, now that I'm a couple years over fifty, on where I've been thru-out my 30 years now as a "professional artist".  By that I mean creating art for a living.  Paying the bills primarily with what I can create from my mind on canvas, paper, board or someone's wall.  I guess that's a loose definition of what a professional visual artist is,... but who cares, Right?......  And maybe nobody should, and if you don't, click away now,  since this post might be a bit egotistical and self indulgent or a clue for someone embarking on this journey to be a professional artist themselves and the sheer madness, desperate courage and faith it takes to be driven to communicate a personal and human story through their work.

5 min gesture compilation, charcoal on canson paper. 2013

Growing up both my parents were something of beatniks and hippies and each had careers in the arts.  My dad as a filmmaker and my mother a designer.  So at an early age I was always surrounded by crazy creative types hanging out in our way too small 2 bedroom apt. where me and my twin sisters all lived.  The Upper West Side of NYC circa 1960's- 1980's, was to say the least, at that time, a broken down neighborhood.  Trust me, nothing like it is today.  It was basically "West Side Story", but the Jets and the Sharks were primarily Blacks and Puerto Ricans.  When I was a kid dodging around the neighborhood I thought my name was "yo, white boy", No Joke!  Through sheer luck, I gaining respect.  Shooting hoops, sketching my buddies or befriending the baddest motherfuckers in the neighborhood, I was able to avoid the real desperate life altering experiences of some of my closest and earliest friends, many of whom fell victim, choosing serious drug addiction, hard core criminal behavior and self destruction.  But as a miracle and in retrospect what this all taught me was a tremendous sense of place and pride towards all the characters and simple human stories that filled this 5-10 block radius. 

In one way or another, depending on how you look at it, all our lives are that unique and filled with small miracles that have shaped and effected each and everyone of us, everyday. 

10 min gesture, charcoal on canson paper. 2013

Keeping things short, as a close, artist friend always reminds me,  I'll end this post here. 

So check back, if you desire and follow along or add a story or two in the comment box below as I attempt to discover in this series, where my motivations begin and the paths, twist, avoidance and distractions, I've takin in life and this thing we call "Art". 
Hopefully an "Authentically Realized Transcendence"!

Thanks for your time,
GB

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