Art and Life imitate each other in countless ways. I am amazed by that fact, over and over again. For example…
Can you recall the feeling of anticipation when your baby was born?
The excitement of wondering what he or she would become?
Strangely enough this excitement, along with a bit of fear, is what we often feel when we stare down at that blank canvas or piece of watercolor paper.
It is brand new. And no matter what we have done in the past, it is a brand new challenge for us to begin again. Putting on the paint is fun! It is our baby and you can really enjoy playing with it. But time passes all too quickly and before we know it, it morphs into a teenager.
Eegads! You knew it was coming, but somehow you are never quite ready for it. You want to love it, but let’s face it, it’s not always easy. You still see some good things, but damn! what is all that weird stuff that has suddenly cropped up? Did you do that?
You’re hoping it’s not too late.
Maybe you just need a break – send it off to Grandmas for a few days so you can see it with fresh eyes. Sure enough, when you next see it, it’s a new day and you begin to see new POSSIBILITIES.
After all, all teenagers go through this stage. Heck, you went thru it yourself. No matter how ugly it is you know deep down it just wouldn’t be right to give up on it. Yes, I know, you look at it and sometimes don’t know where in the world to go from here. It happens.
ALL IS NOT LOST! You have options:
- you can ask a peer
- or a trusted friend
- look thru those many art books sitting on your shelves for ideas on how to continue – how to get over the “hump”. Look for ways other artists have handled this problem.
- GOOGLE images for inspiration – sometimes a ‘spark’ will come to you – really!
OR, follow your own instincts and just plain take a chance!
Yes, you could fail, but you learn from that, too. Sometimes the bad thing teaches you more than the good, so you and your teenager grow immensely.
FAIL UNTIL YOU DON’T!
The main thing I want you to get from this post is never give up. Never.
This is perhaps where I differ from a lot of other artists. Many believe you shouldn’t beat a dead horse.
For me, personally, in both my life and my art, I have learned most by working until I resolve my problems. I never give up on my teenagers, no matter how much grief they give me. True, there are times when it becomes so bad that I truly give up. But in those moments I am truly free! It is only then that I let go and, without fear, just give that thing hell. Sometimes it works and other times not, but I learn. And by gosh, sometimes those teenagers turn around, bend to my will and become something familiar and pleasing. Maybe not perfect, but much improved and giving me the satisfaction that I turned them around. That is invaluable.
And every once in a while…the piece goes thru a complete transformation and becomes something different…strange to me, but beautiful in its own right. That’s when you know it has been worth the pain, the struggle, and that quart of ice cream you ate out of frustration.
SOMETIMES FRUSTRATION AND ICE CREAM IS SIMPLY WHAT IT TAKES to get you out of your rut. This is it, sweet friends. We’re not getting any younger. It’s now or never. I write this as much for myself as I do for you.
- LEARN TO DRAW
- TAKE A TRIP
- MAKE A MISTAKE. It Won’t Be the End of the World.
- TAKE A TRIP
As a matter of fact, it might be the start of something great.
Thanks so much for reading.
AND! How true that is, dear Kathie!!! Thanks and hope all is well!!!
Wonderful words of advice, Kathie! And I love your babies and teenagers! I’m sure you had a great time being a student and tourist recently!!
Very well spoken Kuangy!! I agree with everything you said!! ! Except I would replace the ice “scream” with a Big ass Kingcake!
It’s alwsys so much fun to shsre crestive time with you! Same time, same place next yesr❤❤❤?
Great article Kathie, looking forward to seeing you in Ocala, FL next month. I love reading your stories, you have great insight to art and with people.
Great words, Kathie —
Keep on going … stubborn? Yep, persistent, too. That’s how things get done. So easy to give up, but so much more satisfying to persevere and come out on top. As they say, ‘life imitates art’ and every day is another chance…
Thanks for that! I keep forgetting …. ;0)
Thanks Kathie … I needed these words … don’t dare admit publicly what I have done with my ‘babies’!
Amen Sister!! You are singing my song…There is so much to be learned by solving the problems we create for ourselves! Half of the creative things I come up with are an effort to “fix” something, or “hide a mistake.” In my classes I’m an advocate of loving our paintings through their awkward adolescence…just as we did our kids. Although, some of them are more problematic than others, they will often be the ones that teach you the most. Great blog!! Xo
Kathie ….. You have so many dimensions and so much insight. for me, art is such a personal tangible expression of what is going on inside. It puts spirit onto a piece of paper. A miracle. your lesson today reminds me of the difficult times in my life that taught me my most powerful lessons. Lessons that cannot be read in a book. Thank you again for the inspiration!
Your comparisons between life and art always amaze me! Thanks again for these wonderful thoughts. Keep them coming.
Thanks for the inspiration
I totally agree!!! NEVER EVER GIVE UP!!!! Sometimes I’ll put a painting on a shelf where I can see it for a few days and then VOILA!!! My subconscious will come up with a great idea.
You are always an inspiration! Thank you for being you and sharing yourself with all of us. Love and hugs always.
Thank you for the encouragement. I would like to share what my teenage daughter one said. She was ragging on me and I asked her what did I do too deserve this. She stated, “You are safe. ” I asked her to explain. Her comment was “If I did this to my teacher, my grade would go down. If I did it to my friend, I would loose them. But, you are my mom and you have to lived me.” I think this is with are painting to we have to live it no matter what.
Great words of inspiration and comfort -as usual, thanks Kathie
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you! What a wonderful way you have of looking at life. This is such good advice at the beginning of the year (Holy Moly – how is it February already?) My favorite thought is “Fail until you don’t”. That’s going right up on the inspiration board. How profound. We are going to have to start calling you our guru and I mean that sincerely.
Kathie, this couldn’t have come at a better time. I am trying a zebra and wasn’t happy so I had to keep walking away. I’ve figured out what I’m doing wrong, so these mistakes will help me improve on my final one. Love your tips!
Way to go, Kathie! Great analogy and dead on.
Boy, I really needed that pep talk today ! A watercolor portrait that just kept going south– until maybe, just maybe, I can salvage it. Love your shared thoughts & beautiful art & inspiration!
You’re ability to “keep in touch” is really appreciated, and eagerly anticipated. Thank you!