Mary Baker Art
Art Articles

Garden 2, painting by Mary Baker

Garden 2 © Mary Baker


Art Articles

These are a few of Mary's art articles that she has written over the years. There are also excerpts from the others articles, with links to the full articles on Mary's website, Mary Baker Art.


Azaleas and Pathway, painting by Mary Baker

Azaleas and Pathway © Mary Baker


Why Buy Original Art

Why pay money for an original piece of art work, when you can buy an inexpensive print?

When it comes right down to it, creating a piece of art is a mystery. No artist, no matter how articulate, can explain why a particular work of art was created. By buying an art work you buy a piece of that mystery and have something that no one else will ever have.

An original piece of art is a passionate creation, which not only reflects the soul of the artist, but your soul as well, because you chose it. Owning a piece of art instead of owning a reproduction, is like having a person who is important in your life actually in the room with you, rather than having a photograph of that person on your desk. It reflects a piece of you that you cherish and want to share with the rest of the world.

For most people if they like a work of art, it is because it profoundly affects them. It reminds them of a time in their lives that was personally moving or important. And the exact same piece of art work will mean totally different things to different people, because every person is unique.

An original piece of art work can inspire lives and has the power to nurture and nourish the spirit.

If you compare a room with bare walls to one with original art work, the room with the original art work will be vibrant and alive. People will want to visit that room, very much the same way they want to visit museums, because the art work touches their soul in a very personal way. It reminds them of their humanity, of their significance in the world, something that is lost is the business of everyday lives.

Original art is inspiring and moving; it helps people get up in the morning, get through that meeting that they just didn't want to go to. It can give people the courage to go on, because it expresses something wonderful and profound about themselves, which they may not be able to articulate. That's why people say, "I don't know why I bought this piece of art, all I know is that I love it!"

© Mary Baker


Dahlia, painting by Mary Baker

Dahlia © Mary Baker


Tips on Breaking the Creative Block

There's no question that creating anything is hard to do. Here are some tips if you find yourself creatively blocked.

  • Set a goal
    Set a goal for yourself. For example, it could be to paint one painting, one small painting, one large painting or three paintings. Don't make the goal too big.

  • Set a time table
    Give yourself a time when you want your goal is to be completed. There is nothing like a deadline to help you get things done. You can tell people about the deadline or keep the information to yourself. Don't make the time table too unrealistic.

  • One step at a time
    Baby steps get you to the top of the mountain. If you manage to do one small thing towards your creative goal each day, you will be amazed at how fast you can accomplish it. Ask yourself what is the next step and then do it.

  • If it isn't working stop
    If you are working on a creative project and you don't know what to do, stop and do something else; it can be anything-the laundry, mow the lawn, work in the garage. When you come back to the project, you will probably have the answer to what was blocking you.

  • Progress not perfection
    If you don't expect to create the perfect project, it will take off a lot of pressure. It will make it easier to accomplish what you have set out to do and the process will be a lot more enjoyable.

  • Easy does it
    If you don't create exactly what you've set out to do, don't worry. Ask yourself the question "how important is it?" It will help you get things in perspective.

  • Don't worry about the other guy
    Don't worry about what anyone else is doing. Keep the focus on yourself and what you want to accomplish, it will help you to go forward instead of getting stuck.

  • Just do it
    Don't talk about it, don't worry about it-just do it, one step at a time until whatever you have set out to do, gets done.

© Mary Baker


Poppy, painting by Mary Baker

Poppy © Mary Baker


Art, Artists and Vocation

"If you really want to upset your parents... go into the arts!"
-Kurt Vonnegut

How many times have people been told that "You can't make it as an artist."

How many times when you've told someone that you are studying theater, dance, the visual arts, do people look at you and cringe; feel sorry for you, and feel that you and your family have wasted a great deal of money, and that you have wasted years of your life.

How often when you tell people that you are involved in the arts, do people feel sorry for you because you won't be able to find a job or make it in the "real world."

A vocation has been described as "something you can't not do."

Frederich Buechner has defined vocation as "the place where your deep gladness meets the world's deep need."

A very wise man, Harold Babcock, has this to say, "Vocation is not simply about doing, but, at a much deeper level, it is about being. It is about what Thomas Merton called "one's true self," that self that one is really meant to be, and that no one else can be." Vocation is not always something we choose, much as we might like to thinks so; rather, it is often something which chooses us."

An artistic vocation, sharing your beauty, depth, insight and wisdom with the world, is both a gift and a responsibility. If you have a vocation as an artist, you are not different from the world, but rather you have been given an extraordinary gift, one that requires dedication, focus, courage, perseverance and hard work. Art is not for the faint of heart.

© Mary Baker


Garden 1, painting by Mary Baker

Garden 1 © Mary Baker


Art, Artists and Money

These are some practical money tips for people in the arts.

To read the entire article please press here.


Art, Women and Creativity

Women have been given the greatest gift of creativity there is--the capacity of creating and having a child. Even if a woman has never had children, just the biological possibility, is life defining.

The theory has often been that artists create their best work when they are young and after that "peak" in their career, their art becomes stale and predictable. The assumption is that an artist's work is the most important early in their lives. I would beg to differ, especially when it comes to women.

To read the entire article please press here.


Highly Sensitive Souls

Has anyone ever called you shy - or worse: "too sensitive"? Do you care deeply about EVERYTHING? You may be a Highly Sensitive Soul - a person of deep empathy and high intensity, with powerful intuition, awareness, and intelligence.

Being Highly Sensitive comes with a number of gifts, as well as challenges. See if any of these Highly Sensitive qualities resonate with you.

Article courtesy of Jenna Avery. To read the entire article please press here.


How to Make Time for Art

The key to making time for art is the ability to say "NO".

If you say "yes" to everything that is asked of you, you will not have time to be creative. And it is so easy to say "yes" to all kinds of things and so hard to say "no." It is hard to say "no" to immediate family, extended family, demands of friends, organizations, messy houses, cluttered basements - the list is endless.

Making art takes lots of time. It not only takes a great deal of time to do whatever it is you are creating, but it also takes a great deal time for what most people would consider "down time." Artistic down time is a foreign concept to people who are not artists. Our society values busyness over artistic incubation, but you cannot create art without it.

To read the entire article please press here.


Living with an Artist

Living with an artist isn't easy, particularly if you are the significant other. So, after living with and working with artists for over 20 years I've put together a few suggestions and insights.

Article courtesy of Sylvia White. To read the entire article please press here.



To be a good painter is to understand the mystery of creativity. When people ask me how to paint, I always tell them that it is as important to know when not to work on a painting, as it is to know when to actually paint.

I once heard a scientist describe her creative process. She painted a wonderful picture of the cycles of the seasons. She said it started with Spring, the blooming of an idea, then the long work of Summer, the harvesting of Fall and the long dormancy of Winter, for which there can be no Spring, no new ideas. I have never heard a better description of what the creative process is like.

To read the entire article please press here.


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