Saturday, May 26, 2012

May in the studio...

I haven't posted in a while so I pulled up my photos from the month of May to see what I haven't shared with you yet.  After skimming through all of my pictures, I suddenly realize why I am so wiped out.  May was really, really busy!

I worked on several commissions, lots of new nudes, and some portraits.  I have gotten off to a great start on my series of paintings based on photographs taken around Woodstock, close to my studio.  And, of course, had four very productive Wednesday night sessions with our figure drawing group.

One question I get asked all the time is "How long have you been painting?"  The truth is it feels like forever!  But in a good way - I guess what that really means is that I don't remember a time where I WASN'T painting!

The other expression I hear often is "I want to paint like you!"  And flattering as that is, I can't teach you how to paint like me.  I am me.  You are you.  You will bring your own style and inclinations to your own work.

But what I CAN tell you, is that when you take stock of what you have done each month, you should feel a little bit overwhelmed: you should be drawing and painting as much as possible.  Seeking out inspiration, trying new materials, viewing great work, introducing yourself to new artists, developing your style.  A little bit every day, a LOT on some other days.  There's no other way around it - to improve, you have to work.  You have to be painting or drawing or sculpting as much as possible.  Each piece will MAY NOT all be successful in their own right, but they will be part of the bigger picture - your growth as an artist.

Now go draw something!


From last Wednesday night and a little more on Friday - oil on mounted Wallis paper, 16" x 20".

3 comments:

John Fleck said...

I love your blog. You are right on about painting/drawing/whatever EVERY DAY. I am a stay at home Dad and sometimes it can be tough to find the time, or the energy when I finally get the chance at the end of the day. But when I look back on my growth over the last year or so, it all has paid off. As much as you can manage each and every day.

You like the Wallis paper? I may have to try that. I have been looking for some kind of paper support for oils. I don't always want to use a board or canvas, etc.

Kristina Havens said...

Hi John,

Thanks so much for your kind comment - I am so glad you like my blog!

I enjoyed working on the Wallis paper. I knew that many pastel artists will sketch with oil on that paper first (or with watercolor)and then draw with pastel on top. It seemed to soak in the oil rather quickly - it did not glide on the surface like I am used to. Also, I noticed my brush took a beating - it is like a fine sandpaper, and the bristled were worn down quite a bit. So don't use an expensive/precious brush!

Keep creating!

John Fleck said...

Blick has something called Multimedia Artboards with a smooth side and a rough side. I may check those out. They are supposed to work for oil and water based paint.
I am not keen on wearing out my brushes!

Regards - John