I am sharing this painting today to make a point about exploration when it comes to making art.
As artists we often feel we have to paint certain subjects or in a certain style expected by our viewers, buyers, galleries we deal with, etc. It is true that viewers come to expect a certain type of production from an artist. But we must be able to explore and break these boundaries in the studio.
I have been watching some friends that are now dabbling in faux stained glass and this inspired me to paint this small forest. I love working with inks and enjoyed making the lines and defining the areas.
I started with a textured background. I use the flexible paste by Liquitex to texture my canvas. This insures it won’t crack over time.
When you feel like painting something that is unexpected or new to you, go for it. Especially if you feel some anxiety at the start, you might think, “I could never paint this” or “If I do it, I’ll never show it to anyone”. Well, if you think this way, you must try it because it might turn out to be the key that unlocks your next series or the next step in your painting process.
This self-censoring we go through is what eventually leads to a creativity blockage. All the assumptions and self-judgements should be examined and questioned if we want to move forwards in our art.
We all get inspiration, our imagination sometimes sends us wild images that we often disregard as unimportant or not “fitting in” with the image we want to project of our art. It is in our best interest to follow these seemingly random suggestions we receive through intuition and imagination.
Life gives us a seed and our job is to make sure it grows. Artists often feel like they are carrying the “burden” of creation, that they are responsible for every stroke, for every decision regarding what goes on the canvas.
But it is not so, we need to relax about it because it you think you are responsible for everything, then the process of painting presents endless opportunities for mistake and your success or failure becomes your full responsibility. It is indeed a heavy burden to carry. Painting becomes stressful and aren’t we painting to enjoy ourselves?
When you take the attitude that you do “what needs to be done” because you’re following your intuition and this is where it wants you to go, you become free.
When you listen to the voice of intuition, you are listening to nature, to your own self and it is leading you ahead, always learning and living.
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