It’s so hard to keep going but it’s so worth it.
Last month I tried one of those challenges but I made sure it fit what I really love. A fantastic group of artists called Warrior Painters was a group I had been watching for a while and when the challenge presented itself I was in. So April was all about small gouache studies.
Every day in April. I was already doing them but not consistently every day so this seemed the perfect way to take it up a notch. It was a great practice and now in May I finally got to my oils again after a couple of small injuries and well life taking over my attention and got out there. Feeling a little nervous i just made sure to show up. and it turns out those studies really did strengthen my muscle for painting…I didn’t feel as fussy and was able to lay in the whole thing more confidently, I felt like i got my values better and was able to traverse some tricky color shifts.
Yeah, it’s a journey and there will be bumps along the way, but in the end it is more than worth it.
As an example, let me show you a recent oil painting I did. I don’t think this is necessarily my best but it does bear testimony of the continuous practice of what I’ve come to call my “Mini-Masters.” Those small studies have really been helping me. Although people have told me that I “make it look easy,” it is anything but. It takes utmost concentration and a disciplined dedication to craft; it is hard work, and just like any type of hard work, it always pays off. More importantly, once you’re there in the midst of the process, that stream of imagination and creativity, it is pure bliss.