Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Art Seasons

Trail to Oesa, acrylic, 16x20

After finishing my Yoho collection on which I worked for the entire summer, and after taking a well-deserved (I think) rest to recuperate and clean up all the mess, the studio is calling again. It's close to the end of the year and those last couple of months were supposed to be the time for play and learning, experimenting and trying out new techniques.  

But the little evil voice keeps bugging me to skip the play and do what responsible artists do - make more paintings!  I negotiated a month-off with this nasty creature, but in a couple weeks it wants to see me back on the wagon, or else!

Do you plan out what you want to paint over the entire year? 

If your paintings reflect seasons in some way, typically with seasonal scenery or colors, the timing is kind of important. For example, if you use your winter to paint spring and summer subjects, you will have a nice collection of fresh summery paintings ready to wander into the world in spring.

Accordingly, fall feels appropriate for painting of wintery subjects (while we are still not sick and tired of the cold). I guess we all start resenting snowy scenes by early March if not earlier, although I have heard cries of joy from gallery visitors seeing them during the heat waves of July and August. 

My experience is that art lovers generally enjoy seeing art that compliments nature.

This kind of planning is practical, but the difficulty for the artist is in ignoring the inspiration of what nature is offering at the time. Who wants to paint snow covered trees while the foliage is just turning all shades of gold all around us?  

Of course I prefer to just paint what my heart desires. I suppose in a perfect art world everyone paints what they like, when they like it, and we all get rewarded!

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

More is More

Lake O'Hara Lodge, acrylic, 20x24

Do you ever question the “less is more” saying? It's such a blanket statement that one may be deceived into believing that it is possible to gain more by contributing less.

Call me crazy, but I have always believed that no job should be easy – if it is, than we can probably do more, try harder, or learn something new. 

Even when one acquires superior skills, so it takes less effort to create a piece of art, one is then capable of creating more art, or further expanding skills into some entirely new area that needs to be learned.

This is my personal recipe for what it’s worth - when work feels easy, go back and do more. Keep going until the ease disappears and something new has emerged – that by itself is a personal victory. 

There are new techniques to be learned, new materials to be researched, new concepts to be tried out. Yes, we will end up making some paintings too, but at the end of the day, it's all abut integrity - isn't it?

“I firmly believe that any man’s finest hour – his greatest fulfillment to all he holds dear…is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle---victorious.” (Vince Lombardi)