Spring Color

The 9 hour drive home and back this past week gave me plenty of opportunity to appreciate the colors of spring.   There was no green, but wonderful burgundy reds, and golden willows even if the day was overcast with snow threatening.    The grey white of pussy willows that appear signaling spring added an interesting color to the willows.

Spring Color

Growing up I never really cared for the the time between when the snow left and nature dressed in her greens.  I have since learned to appreciate the spring color but I had to learn to slow down and really look.  The grey of the goose against the dull yellow of the field that was bleached by sun and snow made me wish I still did not the long drive ahead of me and could take the time to sit and sketch.  The next trip home I will make sure to leave time to stop and sketch which would be a welcome break from the road.

I really hope that you take the time to look and make note of the spring color.  Take the time to sketch and make note of the brilliant reds and tones that come to life in the spring. The more time we spend observing and sketching will pay off huge benefits when we take our paintbrushes to our easel.

Showing up at the Easel

Showing up at our easels can be a difficult thing to do.  We can find ourselves pulled away with the demands of everyday living. blank canvas When we stand in front of our easels we face fear, self-doubt and all the inner turmoil that likes to stare back from the easel.   Much easier to be distracted by our plugged in world than face that.   Other times we just set the bar so high for the finished project that with trying to complete the picture that we forget that the process and journey is equally if not more important.

The best thing you can do is just show up and squeeze some paint on your palette.  Now that you have paint there you might as well use it.  Allow yourself to play with the paint, explore brush techniques, mediums and color.   Without experimentation how will you know, art is about doing it!

I already hear the but!  Everyone has that but!  That but is nothing more than an obstacle for your creative mind to find away around.  Make it a date for yourself and don’t let anyone take it from you.    If  I don’t show up at my easel every day and put in the time I delegate myself back to an armchair artist (I can be very very good at that).  One thing about being an armchair artist is that it is comfy and safe but where is the fun and adventure in that?

Robert Genn who writes The Painter Keys  gives excellent advice when he tells us to go to your room.  Every time you go to your room and  show up at the easel; things happen and they are all good.  All artists have just as many bad paintings as they have good ones, even artists who have been painting for years but they still show up at their easel.

So find a way to carve out the time to do your artwork.    There is a small quiet voice trying to get your attention, can’t you hear it ……I can.  In the words of Robert Genn “Go to your room”.


Opening My Paintbox

Paintbox = creativityThere are so many emotions that I feel when I open my paint box.  It can be filled with a full range of emotions from Joy to Fear.  Art has taught me to overcome my doubts, to enjoy the process and the journey.  With opening the paint box I have learned to explore and observe the things around me.  This leads to hours spent at the easel solving issues on the canvas trying to reach the sweet spot where I am satisfied with what is on the two-dimensional surface is what I want to portray.

One thing I  want to share is my feelings about creativity and talent.  “Creativity” is not a special gift given to a chosen few.  I am a firm believer that “Talent is a passion pursued”!  I read that quote somewhere and it stays with me.  We are all creative and talented beings and for some of us being creative and talented was a special magical gift given to a select few.  Creative and Talented were not words that I would have ever applied to myself and every time I hear those words..I think who me?  As a young woman crafty was a word that did not even enter into my vocabulary.  There was always a curiosity on wanting to know how to draw, to paint, to be creative.  Unfortunately I asked the wrong people and received the usual answers of: “You just have to see”,  “it is a gift”,  “it comes natural” and of course my favorite one ”  – “They have talent”.  So I would put away  the thought of being artist.  It was not for me as I was not talented and I did not know how to see which left me feeling a little sad.

As I grew older,  I tried many crafts to stifle the voice that wanted to draw and paint.  I discovered Decorative Painting which taught me so my techniques, but  there was a nag that there was more. The nag just became more persistent, and louder, and kept pushing.   I had the opportunity to take a drawing  and painting classes at the college when living in Alaska.   That dissolved so many creative talent myths and fears for me.  It was OMG. I can do this.   I have discovered my passion and I am pursuing it!  I am an Artist.

If you have even a small voice that says you want to learn to do something, then follow it.  Fill your   with your talent and creativity as I know it is there inside just waiting to be discovered.  You will find plenty of artists willing  to share and help you on your way.  Discover your passion and pursue it!



paint boxMy paint box is  source of wonder and joy every time I open it.  I find myself wanting to share in the journey of becoming a professional artist.  This blog will be written with errors and typos as I am choosing to write this as if you were sitting here with me sharing a cup of coffee.   I  am both excited and terrified at the same time.   Learning to quiet the inner critic is a challenge that all everyone faces when they start something new .   I have found some wonderful resources on the web, great books filled with wisdom and the trials at the easel which I look forward to sharing with you.   So please share your thoughts and comments, after all a coffee date requires two people and it will be no fun if I do all the talking!