One of the reasons why I love painting is because I love the mental challenge of painting. This can of course be a tightrope between a growth experience and a very frustrating experience. Often both simultaneously.
Abstract artist Virginia Cobb says that she likes to set up problems in her paintings so that she forces herself to find solutions. I didn't truly understand that until the past few months of painting. Problem paintings can turn out to be the best paintings. Maybe not visually but artistically. Because at some point if you've worked a painting too hard or too long, you get to a point where you don't have to be careful any longer. There's nothing left to protect. And when there is nothing left to protect, you can really start learning something.
That's how I feel about today's painting. It's Saturday, and I spent much of day in galleries being inspired, which was great but didn't leave much painting time between that and babysitting. (My husband and I try to lend a hand to family and friends who are parents of toddlers.) So this afternoon I had two hours for painting. I painted fast. The result was an unfinished drawing that led to a frustrating painting that led to my current war on blue (seriously, dark blue, why is it so hard to find you) and it led to this painting.
And there was a moment when I thought, "I can save this," and it was quickly followed by, "Wow, I totally ruined that."
But you know what? After the initial disappointment I felt this fantastic weight lift off of me. Now I can really push this painting. I can add line both paint and pen. Maybe even crayon. I can collage layer after layer and then I can top it off with even more paint.
What an exciting place to land after all.