Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Life as an art student | Days 13 & 14 of 20

I could have posted yesterday but I didn't because I was feeling pretty lackluster about what I did. It was the first day of landscape paintings en plein air and I actually did tree studies in pencil rather than in paint. I guess I did OK (for the most part) but I started the day on the note of, "I feel like I've lost my mojo..." and I pretty much finished like that. While I tried to focus all I could think about was how I would rather be at home cleaning up the mess that is my house or how much the dog needed shampooed. *shrug* Well, here is what I did with a nod to the linear progression of the day's work.

So, yeah. I finished the day on an unfinished tree study. The professor insisted that the last one would be the stronger study to focus on and further develop into a painting on day 14 but I kind of rebuffed his suggestions and stubbornly insisted on doing just the one tree.

Today was day 14 and I did my best to do something different even though I was working at the same spot as yesterday. I ate breakfast (didn't do that yesterday) and I even took some quiet time before I got started to read scripture and just take in and connect with the space I was in. I felt tremendously better once I got started and even found myself humming some of my favorite hymns while I worked. Here are some snaps of the progression I made today and where I finished. 

Perhaps it is sacrilege but I scraped my canvas clean and rubbed it down with turpenoid to finish my day. Yes -  I did make some decent progress today but mostly? It was me just riding the learning curve and not me working to make any kind of masterpiece. Scrapping down my canvas is so liberating and it only fills me with confidence and enthusiasm to get to work tomorrow. The stained canvas is a good reminder (to me) that I'm not starting from a completely blank slate and it almost reminds me of a well-seasoned cast iron pan (or sorts).

Tomorrow I'm continuing with the tree study and I am thinking I am going to stick with the tree that I have been working on. I feel like the longer I look at it, study it, and paint it - the better I will know it's forms, values, and colors. I would much better do one really well done piece than a couple that are nothing other than "done."

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