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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Read this if You are Frustrated with your Paintings

'Where the Bison Roam'             11x14         pastel              ©Karen Margulis
 It is easy to get frustrated with your paintings. Even if you are not frustrated I have some great advice to pass on.    When you are learning often the visions of how the painting should look don't match what you actually paint. Your skills don't yet match your visions.

Even if you are an experienced artist you can have moments of frustration. Sometimes it seems as if you can't paint anything decent. Frustrations can lead to artist block.  We all go through this and there are many reasons.  But there is one really good remedy for overcoming frustrations.....

Just keep Painting! 

 Yesterday's letter from Robert Genn was a gem that I just have to share. If you aren't familiar with Robert Genn and his Twice-Weekly Letters  , be sure to check him out and sign up. I always enjoy what he has to say but yesterday's letter really struck a chord.  I meet so many artists who struggle with frustration and painter's block and his advice is one I will be sure to recommend.

In his letter Robert shares that one of the causes of this blockage is something he calls "Educosis" which in his words is too much theoretical knowledge with very little actual easel time.  We all know how important it is to put in those miles of canvas. It is really only with lots of paintings under our belts that the education and theoretical knowledge starts to become intuitive and we begin to make paintings that consistently please us. We need to balance the knowledge with practice time!

Robert has exercises he uses in his workshops to bypass these blockages and he shares one in his letter. It just so happens to be one of the things I love to do. Set a timer (his is for 37 minutes) and paint a painting in 37 minutes. Depending on how much time you have in the studio paint several smaller paintings or if you have less time set the timer for less time and just paint one. The point is.....paint! Even if it is just for 30 minutes. 

If you want to experience less frustration than you need to make that commitment to spend more time actually painting and not fretting that you can't paint!   (and if you are new to painting or a new medium, it is just as important to paint often)

Thanks Robert for the reminder!

underpainting for today's painting which is on Wallis Belgian Mist

Today's painting is from a wonderful trip I took with my art friends to Grand Teton National Park a few years ago. I am feeling the pull to return and explore this gorgeous area again.


pattisjarrett said...

Pretty blues in the mountains and water carried me away.

Karen said...

Thanks Patti!

carol morgan carmichael said...

Love your work and helpful advice and encouragement.

Jane Hunt said...

gorgoeus piece, and a great reminder that we all get frustrated and to just keep going!