2018 Workshop Schedule. New workshops added! click here for details.
Visit my Patreon Page for more painting instruction

Monday, August 11, 2014

What Happens When Painting Plans Change

'Reaching for the Sun'              8x10         pastel          ©Karen Margulis

 A valuable lesson presented itself today. I was reminded just how enjoyable it can be to veer off the planned path. When we do remain flexible and choose to go with the flow we are often rewarded with unexpected treasures.

I am a planner. I am most comfortable when I have a meticulous plan. I plan everything (except meals... I'm not much of a cook these days) I love planning trips and I am often teased by those traveling with me if I have scheduled in the bathroom breaks.  But those who know me realize that the plan is just to cover the bases....we are always flexible and open to changing the itinerary when more interesting things come along.

I was reminded today that sometimes when painting we need to change direction and throw away the plan! It's good for the soul.

reference photo for today's painting
I had a new private student this morning and I was prepared with my usual 'new to pastels' lesson. The student wanted nothing to do with that. She had heard about doing watercolors under pastels and wanted to try it.  I hesitated for a minute...shouldn't we go over the basics first? Shouldn't we stick with the tried and true plan?

Then I reminded myself....what was painting all about anyway? Shouldn't we discover new things and have fun doing it? We can always go back to basics so why not paint what we want and learn about what really interests us?   So we painted sunflowers and we did watercolor underpaintings! It was fun and my student did a wonderful painting!  (and I convinced her to come back for the basics)

watercolor underpainting with cheapo watercolors

The pastels I used for today's painting
What did I learn from this little detour?  Be open to changing the plan and never be afraid to try new things!  It's a great feeling!

Painting details: Uart paper,Terry Ludwig and Great American pastels, inexpensive pan watercolors


Vicky Christensen said...

I love doing watercolor underpaintings and I have you to thank for that Karen. I love your paintings by the way. Thanks for sharing your talent and knowledge with the rest of us!

Denise D. said...

Karen, I love your blog!!
I have found that I learn more when I study something that interests me at the moment. I'm prompted to do more research, which reinforces the topic and subject matter. Some might say, I than, become obsessed!
I agree about the basics, but sometimes, it's better to set the hook and worry about the types of bait later.