I often get asked how I became an artist making art that sells, gets into shows and wins awards. Many times, people assume that it’s because I went to art school. I can tell you that’s not true. Art school has turned out many artists who gave up as soon as they left.
Others assume that I just have IT.
IT – meaning inherent talent and opportunities. That’s not right either. I had very little talent, compared to my student peers at art school. I certainly had very few opportunities either.
The IT that I had was a beginner’s mind, a willingness to learn and a determination to find a way to get better at painting. I got creative in getting better. When I saw that my efforts weren’t paying off I looked at how to adjust them. What’s that old saying? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is insanity.
I developed a way, a method of painting and practicing that allowed me to get better results and faster. I got tired of spending hours and days on painting only to see their many flaws. I started painting smaller. This allowed me to finish a painting faster which also allowed me to hone my wet into wet techniques – getting to a finished look in one sitting. To this day, a large portion of my paintings are finished in one sitting.
This time limit pushed me to stop fiddling, stop getting lost in the details and hung up on perfection. It made me push myself to the “finish” on a painting and not get stuck in the middle of one. This also helped me learn from my mistakes faster and get that ever so needed BRUSH MILEAGE.
I encourage you to be in charge of your artistic progress. Get creative, innovative. Know your strengths and your weaknesses. You want to develop ways that play up your strengths and make your weaknesses not so noticeable.
Whatever you do, keep that brush moving and that consistent practice happening because it’s the only way to get better!
If you’re ever looking for a community to grow with and lessons that will help speed up your progress you’re welcome to join my online membership class, VITAL Art Sessions. Click here.
P.S. I am now offering free framing and shipping on all purchases of oil sketches.