Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Art Supplies: Exponential

Art Supplies: Exponential

 A little over a year ago I started sketching. It was simple. A pencil or two and a sketchpad.

 I progressed to sketching and drawing. It got more complicated. I needed (wanted) more marking tools, more surfaces, more textures. 

In the Bag
Urban Sketching / Plein Air Kit

My supplies multiplied.

Now, I have added painting. Watercolor paints in tubes, pans and pencils. Then came Gouache and Acrylic paints along with more surfaces; canvas, watercolor blocks, pads.....supplies exponential... 
Beginning of Project Creep
Since I split my time in two locations I found it necessary to box up supplies to take with me. Never knowing what might be needed. 

I started with a plastic container with a snap on lid. It measured about 15x13". Enough to handle 9x12" pads, paints, brushes, pencils.

Plastic Box - worked for awhile

Supplies soon overtook it so I added a Banker's Box. The plastic container just fit in it. Now, everything could be carried in one load.

Good Fit - Uninspiring
Oh, but that Banker's Box looked dull. Decidedly not artistic.

Yesterday I decided to add some pizzazz to that old box. I had some left-over wall paint and ceramic tile from a recent bathroom remodel.

That's more like it

Packed and Ready to Travel

Now that Banker's Box has some character.

Bottom - You Shouldn't See This

End - I've Got This

Side - Art Doesn't Always Go Well

End - Zonk

Side - It's All Good

Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Art of Procrastination

What color is your excuse?

I’m just back from vacation. What an excuse. It is just one of many colorful excuses I have painted myself with recently. Another “reason” I haven’t done art. I suspect I’m not alone. What about you? Have you hit the wall, tripped on the hurtle or otherwise been derailed? Or maybe more honest, allowed yourself to be stopped.

One of my favorite entertainments/learning activities is listening to "The SavvyPainter Podcast" [ www.savvypainter.com ]. I just listened to the latest one. Our savvy hostess, Antrese Wood, interviewed Julian Merrow-Smith. Julian is a brit living in the South of France. Antrese’s interviews never fail to deliver. She has a very natural curiosity that guides her interviews. She is curious about what makes artist tick. Why they do what they do. What motivates them. What derailments they have had and how they overcame them. Julian it turns out is a very prolific and fast painter. Julian's daily paintings can be viewed here [ https://shiftinglight.com/ ].  He is often painting one or more paintings daily. I highly recommend listening to that interview or any of the hundred+ podcast that came before it.

So, what’s happened? Am I derailed again? What does a Podcast have to do with procrastination? Well, a lot, actually. I just went about eight days without even making a mark (how does that mesh with someone doing one or more paintings daily?). When I did start back, I just did one little sketch. It was a continuation of a series of thumbnail sketches. The purpose of the sketches was to establish a composition and more importantly capture the gesture of a pose. I was sketching from a photo. One I took while on a walk.

I find to photo very appealing. I have a vision of how I want to paint it. I lost traction, though. Not getting the gesture correct stopped me cold. I did the first three thumbnails in about an hour one night. The fourth was done over a week later. And worse, I spent at least an hour on it alone. It's still not quite right. Now I am allowing my lack of success to stop me again.

I have given my canvas over to Procrastination. It seems that Procrastination is always near. Always close to the things I intend to do. Always has a palette of excuses. Here, try the purple (I can’t get it right I might as well stop) excuse. Procrastination is even adept at mixing colors. Two thirds Paynes Gray to one part Cerulean Blue makes “I’ve got the work-space all picked up. It’ll take too long to get everything out again”. That is what I call the Art of Procrastination. The time I could be doing art is painted with hues coming from Procrastination’s palette.

After listening to over a hundred podcast I find a very consistent thread. The “pros” push Procrastination’s palette aside and use their own.

I'm inspired! I am off to do that painting….right after my “Forest Green” nap….yawn…