Warming Up

There are times when there are no ongoing art projects or there are ongoing art projects but you’re not ready to take them on. Yet, you want to keep the creative juices going or maybe find ideas for future projects. The image below is a warming up exercise that accomplishes all of the above. In this particular image, I started with mark making, collage, and a limited pallet (titanium white, black, buff, cerulean blue, and cad yellow light). I gave myself about a half hour.

I then played with the image on Procreate and and created the image below.

These were done in my sketchbook and are not intended as great works of art but they did succeed in the initial intention. They kept me going. And that’s huge. Maybe you can relate.


Growing Pains of Creating Art

There are some paintings that flow out so easily you feel you’ve mastered art and your soul soars. And then about five seconds later the line, the mark, composition, color, nothing, and I mean nothing works. You dive and crash. All artist go through this. I refuse to be miserable by myself.

So, what can you do? I do a number of things. First, I let myself screw up and walk away. I distance myself from the project and clear my mind. For me that usually means walking or anything not involving art. Sometimes that’s enough to see the painting with a fresh eye when I come back.

If that doesn’t work, I have to go to plan B which involves going back to the basics of composition and color by reading or watching videos. YouTube has many good videos on every topic imaginable. I also put my painting in grayscale to see if the values are working. I rotate the canvas to see it from another angle. And if the painting is flat, I try to create space using perspective, value, and edge. You probably know all this but sometimes we need to hear it again and again.

Art is not for wimps. And the work can be long and frustrating. But when you create that piece, that special piece, it’s the most amazing feeling.

I wish you all the best in your art endeavors, whatever the medium. And please feel free to comment on your struggles. Again, I don’t want to be the only miserable artist out here.