Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Painter's Block

I've been here in Apalachicola, Florida for two and a half weeks.  The weather has been most uncooperative for a plein air painter.  I finally dragged my gear up to my second story room and have attempted to paint in my room.  At least I got my brushes wet. 

Before that it was home repairs, and holiday and travel preparations that kept me away from the easel.  All in all it's been about a month since I last touched brush to paper.

I've discovered that even a short time away from painting can result in painter's block.  Re-igniting interest, finding subject matter, and remembering procedural techniques become difficult.  And after painting for over 40 years, I feel a lack of confidence when facing the blank page.

What's a painter to do?  Here are some things that have helped me to jump-start my painting motor:

1.  Paint some color swatches.  Some wet-in-wet combinations, some wet over dry.

2.  Watch some painting instruction DVD's. 

3.  Re-paint an old painting.  Use a limited palette, arbitrary rather than local color.

4.  Re-visit your old instructional books.

5.  Visit a museum.

6.  Get out your sketchbook.  Check it for subject possibilities.  Make some new sketches.

7.  Make a list of the subjects you love to paint most.  For me, it's boats and trees.

8.  Explore some galleries.

9.  Try painting an entire painting with only your largest brush.

10. Set a goal.   Ten paintings for a week.  Enter a competition.  Contact a gallery.

No comments:

Post a Comment