I've finally got back to painting. A creative block hit me in the middle of a painting the picture to the right. It seemed as though I couldn't paint. I couldn't figure out which colors to use. When I would put paint down, it looked horrible. I kept trying for a few more days then finally gave up. When I get in a funk I lose it all. I needed to something to get back in the groove.
I got online and searched for my favorite painters such as Picasso, van Gogh, de Vlaminck, Braque and several others. I don't necessarily paint or sketch in their style. By doing this, it helps me get my eyes back to where I can see how to use color again, some perspectve and values.
I decided on Picasso. I chose four of his paintings and started sketching them out. The Blue Nude, Pears and Apples, Portrait of a Young Woman and Harlequin and his companion. I'm not good at portrait paintings. For me they are extremely difficult. I get frustrated sketching them. But if I want to improve I have to challenge myself to do something I'm not comfortable with.
After finishing the four sketches I chose Pears and Apples. I printed a copy of the painting and studied it for a while, looking for colors and values, perspective, brush strokes - anything to help me get moving again.
I tried starting the painting. It was difficult. What if I choose the wrong color of paint? What if I start it and screw it up when I'm almost done? Oh God I'm afraid to start. What if I've lost it all? All this junk running through my head. I had to walk away. I needed to clear my thoughts.
Chamomile tea, I'll make a cup of chamomile, that will help.
I made myself a cup. I sat down and watched the steam rise from the cup and disappear into the air. I stared down into the tea cup looking at the color of the tea. It was a light yellowish green. Funny how soothing that was. Just sitting and watching the steam rise from the cup and the color of the tea.
I went back into my studio, looked at the blank canvas. Open the jar of paint, pick up a brush and start. I took a deep breath, opened the jar of yellow ochre and started. That wasn't so bad. I opened up some ultrmarine blue, lemon yellow and other beautiful colors.
It was working. I had at long last started painting again!! It took me approximately four days to finish the painting. I was in no hurry. If I do say so myself it came out pretty good.
That was scary. The first time that happened, I didn't paint for 5 years. I wasn't going to let that happen again. I know what will get me started again. I won't wait 5 years to get over it.
So the next time you get in a funk, relax for a bit, get online, look for something to paint, start sketching, have a cup of tea, stand up, march straight into where ever you paint, open the paint, grab the brush, take a deep breath and go for it.