I've been think a lot about what it means to be an artist lately. I have spent the majority of June/ July so far hanging art in shows and going to art events, to meet people, talk about art, and look at art. While this hasn't given me much studio time, I've only made about 7 or 8 paintings this time, it has given me much to think about in terms of what an artists is and what their role can be in the larger world.
Since then I've been on the search for contemporary artist role models. Interestingly a friend sent me this video of a TED talk featuring artist Shea Hembrey. Who in search of artist roll models seems to have invented his own. http://www.ted.com/talks/shea_hembrey_how_i_became_100_artists.html
So much of what he said about the creative process and many of the general trends in contemporary art are things that I have been struggling with myself. I especially appreciated his ability to create a project that not just allows, but encourages him to work in as many different styles as possible.
So he is my artist role model of the day. Also TED talks are probably going to change my life.