Thursday, September 07, 2006
oil on canvas
I had breakfast with a painter today who had not painted seriously in 20 years. She was very uneasy and intimidated by the idea of starting to paint again.
I have a few suggestions for this problem, which seems to be fairly common.
First of all, trying to start with serious painting after a long hiatus is a mistake. What you might want to do is to learn to play again before you become too serious. If you remember at all what painting was like as a child, that is what I have in mind.
Get some cardboard pieces and old scraps of mat board or heavy paper. Use a kitchen timer and set it for 15 minutes. Get your big , medium and small brushes out and put some paint out to play with. Any medium will do fine..Load your brush and start making cool shapes. angles, and practice making strokes in all directions ,with many different shaped brushes. Essentially, you are relearning how to make strokes without intimidation. Do this for a few days and set your timer.
After a few days, start mixing colors and applying interesting mixtures to the cardboard. After a few days of paint mixing and brush application, you will b ready to make big shapes of the subject you want to paint on the canvas, using your color mixing skills and good brushwork. Meanwhile, be sure to take notes on color mixtures that you like.
You can extend your painting time in small increments by using your timer. At last, you will have the timer set to one hour each day. Try to paint around the same time each day so that you get into the habit of working.
In a couple of weeks, you will be painting like crazy again and enjoying every minute.